SECRETS OF HUMAN ZOOS

In a shocking and emotional expose, Nadifa Mohamed reveals how African people were trafficked to Western countries for entertainment – and experimentation.

Starting in the 1890s, millions of Europeans and Americans encountered “native” Africans for the first time in person – in so-called “human zoos.” This deeply strange but once hugely popular form of “entertainment” starring trafficked people has been all but forgotten. Until now. 

In her first documentary, acclaimed Somali-British novelist Nadifa Mohamed takes us on a remarkable journey, recreating what it was like to live in a human zoo. She unearths hidden documents, discovers never before broadcast early film and audio of the performers and tracks down their descendants. Then, in a shocking climax, Nadifa reveals how they were used for pseudo scientific race experiments – and exposes how some of their remains can be found in museums to this day.

GENRES

Documentary / History

DURATION

1 x one hour

BROADCASTER

Channel 4

YEAR OF PRODUCTION

2022

PRODUCED BY

Red Bicycle

COUNTRY OF PRODUCTION

UK

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