A special kind of world trade map telling stories of commodified human organs, kidney “producers” and “consumers”. Click the symbols on the map that reveals some hidden social relations linking countries and people together.
The ideal conditions of an ‘open’ market economy have thereby put into circulation mortally sick bodies traveling in one direction and ‘healthy’ organs (encased in their human packages) in another direction, creating a bizarre ‘kula ring’ of international body trade. … These new transplant transactions are a strange blend of altruism and commerce; consent and coercion; gifts and theft; science and sorcery; care and human sacrifice. …networks of organized crime (and so called ‘body mafia’) that are putting into circulation ambulatory organ buyers, itinerant kidney hunters, outlaw surgeons (Source: Scheper-Hughes 2003 p. 19).
This map was created by Eeva Kemppainen for followthethings.com. It will appear as part of a new ‘human kidneys’ compilation page based on Nancy Scheper-Hughes’ research and activism, in a new expanded ‘Health & Beauty’ department currently under construction.
This was tweeted and this was the response:
followthethings.com (@followthethings) August 02, 2012
@followthethings wow. The need to place things on a map feels stretched in some cases, but still makes flows of kidneys feel very 'real'!—
Mark Graham (@geoplace) August 02, 2012
Alan Sloane (@alansloane) August 02, 2012
UPDATE this map (with a reference list and Lego re-creations) in now published on followthethings.com here.