Life and death of black Venus

In August 2002 – 187 years after death – the long-suffering body of Saarti Baartman, better known as Black Venus, was finally transported to their homeland, south of the African continent and buried on a secluded hill near the city of Hanki.

Saarti lived only a quarter of a century and died quite young after five years of humiliation in the capitals of enlightened Europe. Her stories are devoted to rough in their naturalism and at the same time the Sentimental film "Black Venus" (director A. Keshish, 2010, France).

"Happy" slavery

No one knows the exact date of birth and the name of a little girl, the parents of which were killed by the boots (Netherlands colonists) during the seizure of the next settlement of Kapsky Gottentotov in the east of modern South Africa. But it is known that by the beginning of the XIX century, during the "mastering" of these territories, almost all the tribes of Capovic Gottentotov were exterminated or turned into slavery.

A girl who, as it is believed to be born in 1789-1790, was lucky – she was not killed. She became a slave in a family of rich boric farmers who lived in the Cape Town area. She was given a new name Sarah, but called Saarti. In the language of Afrikaans, who enjoyed her owners, it was a causative-contemptant modification from Sarah.

Thanks to the musical hearing, she quickly mastered the language of the owners and could well live the ordinary and in his own life of the maid-slave in a rich house, have family and children.

Development of Fate

However, the English surgeon William Dunlop who killed on the farm, drew attention to the peculiarities of her shape (large repellent buttocks and pronounced genitals) and offered a brother of the owner of Saarti Hendrik Caesar to earn money, driving such an unusual copy to London.

In the tribes of Gottentotov in South Africa, women have an amazing feature: boron hypertrophy – up to 2 m in gripping. This anomaly is known today as steatopyagia

This happened in 1809, two years after the law was adopted in England, prohibiting the slave trade, that is, for a trip to London, it was necessary not only for the formal permission of the governor of the Kapskaya Colony of Lord Caledon, which he later regretted, but also the consent of the most Saarti.

The girl, which was then a little less than 20 years old, assured that in London she will be able to get rich, and Saarti agreed that she determined her further fate.

"Human zoos"

In 1810, Saarti brought to London and began to show for money in naked form to everyone who wanted to familiarize himself with the peculiarities of her body.

Dicky Aborigines brought out of the colonies before, but they were not accepted to demonstrate for money to everyone, and it was from these shows "Gottentoto Venus" (so Saarti was called in advertising bills) began in Europe a shameful practice of creating "human zoos", which existed before the beginning Twentieth century.

The last "human zoo" was organized in 1958 in Brussels at the Expo exhibition, where Belgians presented the Congolese village with its inhabitants

That this degrades human dignity, no one recalled, because such categories, as humanism, civil rights and freedoms, were not considered in enlightened Europe in relation to savages, which were considered Africans and aborigines of other colonies.

London "Contract" with Dr. Dunfom

Having learned about the humiliating and subanence position of Saarti Baartman, representatives of the Abolitionist Organization "African Association" tried to achieve her liberation. To do this, it was necessary to prove that it is located in London on the position of slave.

But all the evidence that were provided to the court were indirectly, and Baartman’s judge itself, "whether she was exposed to the public with her own consent," replied that he was exhibited without any coercion in exchange for receiving part of the profits from the shows. From a formal point of view, it was true: she voluntarily went London, agreed to demonstrate himself to the public and really received some very little money for shows.

Life and death of black Venus

As a result, the court qualified her relationship with Mr. Dunlop as a "contract" and the question was closed.

Four years later, when the London public has lost interest in the peculiarities of the body of Saarti, it was sold to a certain Frenchman named by the name of the rey.

See Paris and die

The last 15 months of his life Saarti held in Paris, where it is exactly the same as in London, put on the public. Only living conditions were worse, and the owner is gross.

But in France, she attracted the attention of scientific husbands. They studied the structure of her body, invited her to participate in "Scientific Pictures" in the Paris Botanical Garden. Saarti, director of the National Museum of Natural History of Georges Cüvier, was particularly much attention. It was interested not only by the physical, but also intellectual features of black Venus, as was the special report, where, in particular, it is said about her excellent memory and free ownership of the Dutch.

Somewhere in the year Saarti was tired of the Paris public and became the object of frank ridicule, caricatures and comedy sketches. She was addicted to alcohol, began to earn prostitution and in December 1815 died or sieves, or from Syphilis, or from pneumonia.

Life after death

The remains of Saarti were not buried in the Christian rite, despite the fact that in December 1811 she was baptized in the Cathedral of Manchester. Her body was overwhelmed, dismembered, studied and demonstrated during lectures on anthropology as a "evidence" of how blacks are close to monkeys. Skeleton, brain and other fragments were settled and until 1974 was exhibited in the Paris Museum of Man.

All requirements for the need to stop abuse over the body of Baartman and buried him in their homeland who sounded from the 40s of the twentieth century, ignored.

Only after Nelson Mandela came out of prison was elected President South Africa and in 1994 officially asked the French government to return the remains of Saarti to their homeland, in France began to discuss this topic. And did it for eight long years.

Life and death of black Venus

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