Freedom and Abolition in Latin America

Thu Oct 20, 2011
Martin E. Segal Theatre
CUNY Graduate Center

With panelists: Christopher Schmidt-NowaraCelso CastilhoJason McGrawEmily Kay Berquist

What are the particularities of abolitionism in Latin America and what are its connections with contemporary anti-slavery movements in the British and French Atlantic worlds? These two panels will focus on the trajectory of anti-slavery in Latin America, examining early struggles for freedom, the emergence, transformation, and impact of anti-slavery ideas, and the complex reality of slavery’s persistence in the Spanish Caribbean and Brazil until the late nineteenth century.

The first panel, with Emily Berquist (History, California State) and Chris Schmidt-Nowara (History and Spanish Culture & Civilization, Tufts) will address the current research questions at the heart of the study of abolition in Latin America using an Atlantic framework. The second panel, with Celso Castilho(History, Vanderbilt) and Jason McGraw (History and American Studies, Indiana) will illustrate the impact of slavery and abolitionism in the Latin American political landscape, with case studies about Brazil and Colombia, considering the relationship between racial identities, nationalism, and discourses of freedom in the nineteenth century.

The panelists will be joined by moderators Marcela Echeverri (History, College of Staten Island, Resident Mellon Fellow at The Center for the Humanities, The Graduate Center, CUNY) and Amy Chazkel (History, Queens College).

co-sponsored by the Andrew W. Mellon Seminar