Seeking memorials (anywhere worldwide) for people killed by police or government brutality?
October 21, 2006 11:47 AM   Subscribe

Memorial / Activist Art: Where in the world are there public, physical memorials of any kind (sculptures, murals, installations, etc.) for individuals who were killed by police or by governments? I'm really inspired by the Omofuma Stein in Vienna (a self-funded/DIY granite sculpture, first installed guerilla-style in front of the Vienna Opera House and now permanently installed in Vienna's Museumsquartier) and I want to document/celebrate similar projects elsewhere in the world.
posted by allterrainbrain to Society & Culture (16 answers total)
There is a rather nice memorial to the Hungarian people who fought in October of 1956
posted by Gungho at 11:57 AM on October 21, 2006

I should add it is in Boston, MA. USA
posted by Gungho at 11:58 AM on October 21, 2006

A database of Holocaust memorials can be found at, but there are certainly thousands of other smaller memorials and monuments that are not included in that source.
posted by arco at 12:30 PM on October 21, 2006

I'm assuming Holocaust memorials and the countless war memorials are too establishment for you?

There's one for the Ludlow Massacre in Colorado. I found it while driving the adjacent freeway and wanted to see what it was all about.
posted by Brian James at 12:33 PM on October 21, 2006

Arlington West?
posted by Kloryne at 12:42 PM on October 21, 2006

The Trail of Tears, the Boston Massacre, Mary Dyer, Crazy Horse, Jallianwala Bagh (the Amritsar Massacre)...there will probably be too many like these to count. I was surprised when I looked up some incidents to find that there are no specific monuments. However, there is now a monument at Babi Yar.

In some odd way, the persistent lack of a monument to the police at the site of the Haymarket riots counted as a monument to the protestors and the men hanged later, but now there's a formal one.
posted by dilettante at 12:47 PM on October 21, 2006

Kent State May 4 Memorial.
posted by ofthestrait at 12:58 PM on October 21, 2006

Nothing is too "establishment" -- I would love to hear about projects from people or groups at all scales / resource levels / etc.
posted by allterrainbrain at 1:23 PM on October 21, 2006

Tolpuddle Martyrs. Probably not what you are looking for but King Charles I was killed by a government.
posted by TheRaven at 2:15 PM on October 21, 2006

Thanks everybody and keep it coming! I should've been clearer in my OP that I'm grateful for *all* pointers to memorials for anyone killed by organized institutional forces (police, governments, military, etc.) regardless of scale or legality or justification of the killings at the time.

While I'm most excited and inspired personally by small-scale "people's monuments," I'm interested in the full range of memorials to victims of institutionalized killing, especially since it's impossible to define "acceptable killing" across cultures and history.
posted by allterrainbrain at 2:28 PM on October 21, 2006

while in munich long ago, i stumbled upon this memorial to the white rose. the white rose was a german anti-nazi student protest group during WWII. all of them were executed by the nazis. the monument is stone copies of their flyers embedded in the walkway as if they had been spilled, with some spread out as if blown by the wind. i found it very intimate and moving.
posted by bruceo at 2:55 PM on October 21, 2006

There's a memorial in Buenos Aires where the "club atlético" was - a detention and torture center used during the dirty war (1970s). The last five pictures in this gallery are parts of it. It's huge, and under an overpass.
posted by whatzit at 3:09 PM on October 21, 2006

There is a mural depicting the fight by citizens of Cambridge, MA against the construction of the Innerbelt highway.
posted by Gungho at 3:13 PM on October 21, 2006

Bangkok's Democracy Monument might be interesting to you.

Although its design incorporates a sculptural panel depicting soldiers battling for democracy, in reality the event it commemorates was a bloodless military coup which eventually led to a dictatorship. Unfortunately it earned the legitimacy of its name more than 50 years later, becoming a de facto memorial to an act of government-sponsored violence when it was the site of a violent crackdown by the Thai Army on protestors calling for the restoration of democracy after yet another military coup.
posted by Kraftmatic Adjustable Cheese at 6:45 PM on October 21, 2006

I heard there was a statue dedicated to the victims of the Tuskegee Experiment in Alabama but I wasn't able to track it down when I was there. The guidebook I had may have confused it with the Tuskegee Airmen Memorial. There is a Multicultural Center there, however.
posted by jessamyn at 7:50 PM on October 21, 2006

Belatedly rememered: there's a statue of Louis XVI by the Jefferson County courthouse in Louisville, KY.
posted by dilettante at 2:09 PM on October 26, 2006

« Older Poem ID, possibly Auden.   |   Why does my internet connection keep dropping?? Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.