Wednesday, March 2, 2022 - 12:00pm to 1:15pm
Using archival materials, literary texts, and physical monuments to the history of slavery and abolition, this presentation examines an occulted history of suicide as a response to French slavery in the Atlantic world. From the African littoral to the Caribbean basin, throughout the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, individual and collective acts of self-destruction were one means by which Amerindians and sub-Saharan Africans resisted and contested French colonizing violence. My dissertation, The Suicide Archives: Literary Resistance in the Wake of French Empire argues that African and Caribbean writers and artists bear witness to a history that otherwise recedes from view.
Gilder Lehrman Center