Human Zoos Seattle Premiere at Woodland Park Zoo May 8


“A racially charged story that will mesmerize you… You have to see it to believe it and then wonder why they didn’t teach you this chapter in history class.”–Oregon Documentary Film Festival

Join us on May 8 at 7:30 pm for the FREE Seattle premiere of a powerful new documentary exploring the relationship between science, faith, and the sanctity of human life. Sponsored by Discovery Institute, the screening will be at the Woodland Park Zoo. The evening will also include Q&A with the film’s director, Dr. John G. West.


Human Zoos tells the shocking story of how thousands of indigenous peoples were put on public display in America in the early decades of the twentieth century. Often touted as “missing links” between man and apes, these native peoples were harassed and demeaned.

Their public display was arranged with the enthusiastic support of the most elite members of the scientific community, and it was promoted uncritically by America’s leading newspapers. This award-winning documentary explores the heartbreaking story of what happened, shows how African- American ministers and other people of faith tried to push back, and reveals how some people today are still drawing on Social Darwinism in order to dehumanize others. The film also explores the tragic story of eugenics in America, the effort to breed humans beings based on Darwinian principles.


The 55-minute film features interviews with Pulitzer Prize-winning author Pamela Newkirk, author of Spectacle: The Astonishing Life of Ota Benga (winner of the NAACP Image Award); California State University historian Richard Weikart, author of The Death of Humanity; philosopher Jay Richards of The Catholic University of America; and theologian Olufemi Oluniyi of the Centre for Values and Social Change in Nigeria.

The documentary has already been honored with numerous awards: “Best in Show” by the Cinema Worldfest Awards in Toronto, Canada; “Best Editing” from the Oregon Documentary Film Festival; and “Awards of Excellence” from the Hollywood International Independent Documentary Awards and the Impact DOCS Awards.

This event is free but registration is required.


This event is sponsored by Discovery Institute. For questions, contact Donna Scott.