EDITED: Scully and Patton on Gender and Slave Emancipation in the Atlantic World


Pamela Scully and Diana Paton, eds. Gender and Slave Emancipation in the Atlantic World. Duke University Press, 2005.

via Duke U Press:

Continue reading “EDITED: Scully and Patton on Gender and Slave Emancipation in the Atlantic World”

EDITED: Campbell and Elbourne on Sex, Power and Slavery

SexPowerSlavery Cover

Gwyn Campbell and Elizabeth Elbourne, eds. Sex, Power, and Slavery. Ohio University Press, 2014.
via Ohio University Press:

Sexual exploitation was and is a critical feature of enslavement. Across many different societies, slaves were considered to own neither their bodies nor their children, even if many struggled to resist. At the same time, paradoxes abound: for example, in some societies to bear the children of a master was a potential route to manumission for some women. Sex, Power, and Slavery is the first history of slavery and bondage to take sexuality seriously.

Twenty-six authors from diverse scholarly backgrounds look at the vexed, traumatic intersections of the histories of slavery and of sexuality. They argue that such intersections mattered profoundly and, indeed, that slavery cannot be understood without adequate attention to sexuality. Sex, Power, and Slavery brings into conversation historians of the slave trade, art historians, and scholars of childhood and contemporary sex trafficking. The book merges work on the Atlantic world and the Indian Ocean world and enables rich comparisons and parallels between these diverse areas.

EDITED: Robertson and Klein on Women and Slavery in Africa


African Diaspora, Ph.D. is revisiting scholarship that has shaped the study of people of African descent across time and place.

Claire C. Robertson and Martin A. Klein, eds. Women and Slavery in Africa. Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1985.

In a 1985 review of the volume, Patrick Manning wrote:

Continue reading “EDITED: Robertson and Klein on Women and Slavery in Africa”

Call for Papers/Panels: Life Histories of African Slaves (ASA 2013 & AEGIS 2013)

via The Harriet Tubman Institute:

Over the last five years, Alice Bellagamba, Carolyn Brown, Sandra Greene and Martin Klein have been involved in a project to find and publish African sources on the history of slavery and the slave trade within Africa. The most recent was a conference in Berlin that dealt with work and life cycle. We are in the process of publishing documents and papers that have emerged from these conferences. One of our central concerns has been to understand the lived experience of slaves in Africa and in the slave trade out of Africa. To that end, three of us would like to push further in one area, the quest for life histories of African slaves. Some recent work has been done in this area by Paul Lovejoy and various collaborators, by Michael Larue and by Eve Troutt Powell. Are there more life histories out there? We think so. If so, we would like to organize panels at the biannual meeting of Africa-Europe Group of Interdisciplinary Studies (AEGIS) in Lisbon 26-28 June 2013 and at the African Studies Association Meeting in Baltimore 21-24 November 2013. Our goal would be to eventually publish a book of such narratives. These life histories can be biographical or autobiographical.
Interested persons should submit titles and abstracts to martin.klein@utoronto.ca or alicebellagamba@yahoo.it or seg6@cornell.edu. Please indicate which conference you wish to participate in. We need proposals for the AEGIS meeting by October 10. The ASA programme deadline will be much later. We have no funds for travel.
Alice Bellagamba, Sandra Greene and Martin Klein

NEWS: Two 2011-2012 IGK Fellows Working on Slavery

Two 2011-2012 Internationales Geisteswissenschaftliches Kolleg (IGK) Fellows at the Humboldt University of Berlin are developing projects related to slavery in Africa and the Americas.  From the website:

Martin Klein

Martin Klein is professor emeritus from the University of Toronto, where he taught African history. For most of the last forty years he has been doing research on the history of slavery and the slave trade within Africa. His most recent projects have been research into African sources for the history of slavery and the slave trade and efforts to look at slavery in a broad comparative perspective.

His project at the International Research Center involves a comparative study of slavery in West Africa. He intends to start with two questions – first, the different forms of slavery that emerged in the cities and factories that serviced the slave trade and the commodity trade that succeeded it; and second, the way the struggle for the control of labor after start of the emancipation process influenced the life options of former slaves.

Henrique Espada Lima

Henrique Espada Lima is professor in the Department of History at the Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina (Brazil), where he teaches, supervises and conducts research on historiography and contemporary labor history. His first schooling was in psychology and he has a Masters degree in literature (Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina, 1993) and a doctorate in history (Universidade de Campinas, 1999). He has done research in the areas of contemporary historiography and micro-history as well as labor history, focusing on the lives of ex-slaves in nineteenth-century Brazil. He was coordinator of the Brazilian Academic Network of Labor Historians from 2007 to 2010.

His project at the International Research Center will focus on reconstructing the trajectories of individuals, families and groups of freed African slave workers and their descendants in a southern Brazilian locality – the Island of Santa Catarina – by delving into notarial and parochial records as well as judicial records (civil and criminal) and postmortem inventories. His research will examine and reconstruct these trajectories, focusing on the numerous strategies employed by these men and women in order to free themselves from slavery and assign meaning and content to the “freedom” they achieved. Special attention will be paid to the generational transits and the various labor and freedom arrangements as viewed through the lifecycles of individuals and families. The period covered by the research goes from approximately 1830 to 1900, focusing on the Brazilian slave system’s long-term process of disaggregation as well as on the first decade after emancipation, which came about in 1888. Finally, inspired by a growing scholarship in the field of labor history that proceeds from a global and transnational perspective and employing a micro-historical approach, his research will discuss a wide array of questions that focus on the blurred boundaries between “slavery” and “freedom”.

The International Research Center (IGK) “conducts research into work with a special focus on work as a concept and on its performativity.”  Read more about the center here and fellows here.

Beswick and Spaulding, eds. African Systems of Slavery

From Publisher Website:
African Systems of Slavery continues a discussion opened by Suzanne Miers and Igor Kopytoff in 1977 with their seminal collection Slavery in Africa. The present volume contains new offerings by original contributors as well as valuable studies by newcomers who share the original editors’ perspectives. These include a nuanced understanding of African institutions of human subordination and a preference for definitions and terminology rooted in African culture. While some African historical situations attained a status that would justify the application of concepts imported from the world of Atlantic or Islamic slavery, many did not, and the burden of this volume is to oppose the politically popular but intellectually highly reductionist tendency to do so. African slavery, in the first instance, should be approached on its own terms.

Table of Contents:

Introduction / Stephanie Beswick and Jay Spaulding
Slavery in the Western Soudan / Martin A. Klein
Slaves without rulers : domestic slavery among the Diola of Senegambia / Robert Baum
The work of slaves in the Akan and Adangme regions of Ghana in the nineteenth century / Raymond E. Dumett
When deities marry : indigenous “slave” systems expanding and metamorphosing in the Igbo hinterland / Nwando Achebe
Death’s waiting room : Equatorial Guinea’s long history of slavery / Randall Fegley
Slaves in the politically decentralized societies of Equatorial Africa / Robert Harms
Indigenous slavery and the Atlantic trade : Kongo texts / Wyatt MacGaffey
Bound to violence : Uganda’s child soldiers as slaves / Randall Fegley
South Sudanese systems of slavery : state expansion and slave mobility among the Bari and Azande of South Sudan (c. 1700-1900) / Stephanie Beswick
“Slaves of the king?” : rhetoric and reality in the Nubian state tradition / Jay Spaulding.