“Some passports do not pass many ports”

Souleymane Bachir Diagne

Do you know your own family’s history of movement?

Curators asked visitors to chart their families migration paths on a map in the gallery, using the cutter to separate a piece of string and connect it to the points on the map. Visitors were encouraged to show as many stops along the way as they know about: many migrants live in intermediate places for years, waiting for an opportunity to settle permanently.

While engaging in this activity, the curators invited visitors to reflect on the traumas of globalization that shape the current conditions of migration.

Photo of interactive map in the exhibit, with colored string tied between general landmarks.

Participate in #SomePassports

Since the Haffenreffer Museum and Brown University sit on traditional and ancestral Narragansett and Wampanoag lands, we are daily reminded of the mass migrations inherent to settler-colonial projects worldwide, and the centuries-long history and afterlife of the transatlantic slave trade. Global movement continues to be conditioned by inequities and discrimination, based on people’s nationality, race, class, gender, and religion. Free movement often only applies to commodities and a distinct elite. How can we reimagine mobility?

Curators now invite visitors to the virtual exhibit to continue sharing their stories of migration.

Curators invite participants to think about the millions of interwoven migration stories that surround you every day. How do they shape your life, and the place where you live?

To contribute, share your story in the comments section below, or tag the Haffenreffer Museum on your favorite social media platform and use the hashtags: #SomePassports and #Transient Matter