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A Temporary Harriet Tubman Statue At City Hall Underscores The Problem with Philly’s Monuments

January 16, 2022

Philadelphia last week unveiled a temporary monument to American abolitionist and political activist Harriet Tubman, created by figurative sculptor, Wesley Wofford.

Titled The Journey to Freedom, the statue will stand on City Hall’s north apron only through Black History Month and Women’s History Month. This temporary tribute to Tubman is only the third statue of a historical woman in the entire city, along with Joan of Arc and Mary Dyer. And it’s the very first to a Black woman.

What does it mean for Philadelphians and tourists to see statue after statue depicting only the achievements of men, nearly all of them white? What does it mean when only the historical contributions of white men are honored in our public space?

Today, I wrote an opinion piece for Billy Penn talking about it, read it now here.

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