Pioneering the History of Black Britain: A Conference in Honor of James Walvin

Date: Friday, November 12, 2010

Location: Luce Hall Auditorium, 34 Hillhouse Avenue, Yale University

Summary: This one-day conference is held in honor of James Walvin, one of the great scholars of the Transatlantic slave trade, and a pioneer in the unearthing the history of Black Britain. Walvin’s extensive career has included work at universities in Barbados, Australia, Britain, Africa, and here at Yale, where he has held various fellowships, including a recent one at the Yale Center for British Art. Additionally, Jim Walvin was the British government advisor for the abolition celebrations in 2007, and he has recently been instrumental in developing a collaborative seminar with the Gilder Lehrman Center for educators in the U.S. the U.K, and West Africa to explore the history of the Middle Passage. This conference will bring together scholars from across the U.S., Britain, and the Caribbean to celebrate Walvin’s considerable work in the field.

Sponsors: Gilder Lehrman Center; the Initiative on Race Gender and Globalization at Yale; the European Studies Council; the British Studies Program; and the Edward J. and Dorothy Clarke Kempf Memorial Fund

Speakers: Opening Remarks, David W. Blight, Yale University

Conference Overview, Hazel V. Carby, Yale University

Panel 1: The Atlantic Slave Trade
David Richardson, University of Hull
Edward B. Rugemer, Yale University
Stephanie Smallwood, University of Washington, Seattle
ModeratorDavid W. Blight, Yale University

Panel 2: The Diasporan Legacy of the Slave Trade
Madge Dresser, University of the West of England
Saidiya Hartman, Columbia University
Gad Heuman, University of Warwick
ModeratorHazel V. Carby, Yale University

Panel 3: Race and Sport
Ben Carrington, University of Texas, Austin
Aviston Downes, University of the West Indies, Cave Hill
ModeratorCaryl Phillips, Yale University

Concluding RemarksDavid W. Blight, Yale University