A very short break gives me just enough time to hop on my bike and reach Interaccess, Toronto Electronic Arts Centre, to attend the opening of the exhibition “Whose Body Is It, Anyway?” curated by artist/curator Camille Turner (below)
Should the illegal traffic of organs regularized? if you were in an extreme condition of health emergency and you were offered to buy a new organ, what would you do?
these were two questions I was asked by Monir Moniruzzaman, the author of one of the two installations opening tonight at Interaccess . there is no easy answer to the above questions, as moral and ethical issues regarding the commodification of body parts and the supposed sacrality of the body arise.
Inspired by his doctoral research at the department of Anthropology at the University of Toronto, this installation examined the extremely lucrative–and illegal–industry of organ traffic in Bangladesh. in a country where 78% of the population lives with less than 3 $ day and with a government that pays no attention to this illegal activity, organ brokers and intermediaries, recipients and sellers alike openly and freely publish their requests on newspapers
pressed by debts, people are forced to offer their kidneys or part of their livers to prospective recipients, while requests of organs are advertised as if by selling your organ were a “noble” gesture. the traffic becomes a normalized activity as the donors are provided with fake documents to travel to India and undergo the transplant. This is an alienating experience because the donor cannot speak to anybody of their experience. they are left often traumatized, with a small compensation, poor post-surgery assistance and a visible scar.