DIGITAL: Rankin Maps the Spread of Slavery in United States

Rankin_slavery1790

A digital project by Bill Rankin visualizes the spread of slavery in the United States in maps. Rankin uses dots, black space (to render county/state lines nearly invisible), and color gradations to mark the changing population of slave and free:

Continue reading “DIGITAL: Rankin Maps the Spread of Slavery in United States”

Advertisements

DIGITAL: New Resource – “Slave Revolt in Jamaica, 1760-1761: A Cartographic Narrative”

Slave Revolt in Jamaica, 1760-1761

Vincent Brown (Harvard University) unveils a new resource for studying slavery and slave revolt in Jamaica:

via Slave Revolt in Jamaica, 1760-1761:

This animated thematic map narrates the spatial history of the greatest slave insurrection in the eighteenth century British Empire.  To teachers and researchers, the presentation offers a carefully curated archive of key documentary evidence.  To all viewers, the map suggests an argument about the strategies of the rebels and the tactics of counterinsurgency, about the importance of the landscape to the course of the uprising, and about the difficulty of representing such events cartographically with available sources.  Although this cartographic narration cannot be taken as an exhaustive database—for instance, it does not examine major themes such as belonging and affiliation among the insurgents or the larger imperial context and interconnected Atlantic world— the map offers an illuminating interpretation of the military campaign’s spatial dynamics….

….Mapping the great Jamaican insurrection of 1760-61 allows us to see how the island’s topography shaped the course of the revolt, how the rebellion included at least three major uprisings, and how its suppression required the sequenced collaboration of several distinct elements of British military power.  From the cartographic evidence, it appears that the insurrection was in fact a well-planned affair that posed a genuine strategic threat, checked ultimately by an effective counterinsurgency.  Yet if the map draws a clearer picture of the extent and contours of the insurrection, it cannot convey the ambition, hope, desperation, shock, dread, alarm, cruelty, bloodlust, and sheer mayhem of the experience.  These are matters left to the historical imagination of viewers and readers.

More on Tacky’s Revolt (via Project Description):

In 1760, some fifteen hundred enslaved black men and women— perhaps fewer but probably many more— took advantage of Britain’s Seven Year’s War against France and Spain, to stage a massive uprising in Jamaica, which began on April 7 in the windward parish of St. Mary’s and continued in the leeward parishes until October of the next year.  Over the course of eighteen months the rebels killed as many as sixty whites and destroyed many thousands of pounds worth of property.  During the suppression of the revolt over five hundred black men and women were killed in battle, executed, or committed suicide.  Another 500 were transported from the island for life.  Colonists valued the total cost to the island at nearly a quarter of a million pounds. “Whether we consider the extent and secrecy of its plan, the multitude of the conspirators, and the difficulty of opposing its eruptions in such a variety of places at once,” wrote planter-historian Edward Long in his 1774 History of Jamaica, this revolt was “more formidable than any hitherto known in the West Indies.”[1]

Explore the site here.

Image Credit: “Soulevement des Negres à la Jamaique en 1759, ” as shown in David Francois’ “Histoire d’Angleterre” (Paris, 1800), Vol. 3 .

CFP: “Pictures from an Expedition: Aesthetics of 19th-century Cartographic Exploration in the Americas” (Newberry Library)

Call for Papers:
Newberry Library Symposium, June 20-21, 2013, Chicago, IL
“Pictures from an Expedition: Aesthetics of 19th-century Cartographic Exploration in the Americas”

We seek historians, art historians, geographers, and scholars of visual culture for a symposium to be held in Chicago at the Newberry Library on June 20-21, 2013. The symposium will consider the aesthetics and visual culture of 19th-century cartographic exploration in the Americas. The nineteenth century represented a high point in mapping expeditions at the hemispheric level. These ostensibly scientific expeditions, which charted territories often in support of nation building projects, produced vast amounts of visual and artistic materials. This symposium will focus on this visual material addressing such questions as: What kinds of 19th-century visual practices and technologies of seeing do these materials engage? How does scientific knowledge get translated into the visual and disseminated to the public? Can looking at mapping hemispherically challenge a distinction between North American and South/Central/Latin American methodologies or practices of exploration? We are interested in all forms of visual representation, including maps, sketches, drawings, landscape paintings, photography, lithography, etc. Scholars focusing on visual aspects of indigenous mappings, polar or Alaskan exploration, and Amazonian South America are particularly encouraged to submit proposals.

The symposium is generously funded by a grant from the Terra Foundation for American Art. Participants’ travel and lodging will be covered.

Proposals including a title and abstract (maximum 500 words) should be sent by Monday, January 14, 2013 to:

Ernesto Capello, History, Macalester College, ecapello@macalester.edu
Julia Rosenbaum, Art History, Bard College, rosenbau@bard.edu

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: