Several weeks ago one of my daughters moaned over my enthusiasm for Downton Abbey, flatly stating that she loathed costume drama. Well perhaps those weren’t her exact words, but that was the gist of her sentiments. I replied in a way I often do (which some find enlightening, others annoying), that though set in the 1920s, the characters, their emotions and choices are as relevant today as ever, just like Shakespeare.
And that rape and servitude aren’t an act and a situation that humans have moved on from, but which are very much part and parcel of everyday life for tens of thousands around the world today. Whether in a domestic setting among family members or complete strangers on the internet, abuse takes its toll on the spirit of the victim and often emboldens the perpetrator. At least in Downton, the servants appear to be paid a decent wage and are treated with a degree of respect and courtesy. And though there has been tremendous progress in terms of poverty alleviation around the globe, there is nonetheless considerable economic exploitation and exclusion in both developing and developed countries, with accompanying social and political unrest.
The following is my photographic protest of personal, economic and social injustice.