The Working Group on Slavery and Visual Culture is an interdisciplinary forum created to discuss research related to images of slavery and the slave trade as well as the creation and use of  images and objects by enslaved peoples and slaveholders. Our aim is to explore the multivalent relationship between slavery and visual cultures, examining themes such as visuality and memory of the slave trade; the role of the gaze and surveillance in slave societies and societies with slaves; regional comparisons of visual regimes associated with slavery; visual culture’s connection to racialized regimes of slavery; and the roles played by self-fashioning and the accumulation of visual capital by the enslaved.

The Working Group was founded in 2016, and is coordinated by Agnes Lugo-Ortiz (RLL), Larissa Brewer-García (RLL), Danielle Roper (RLL), Christopher Taylor (English), and Allyson Nadia Field (Cinema and Media Studies). It is a collaborative endeavor between the University of Chicago and Yale University, where founding member Cécile Fromont is the main organizer. For information about activities at Yale see: https://slaveryvisualculture.yale.edu.

The Working Group is supported by the Neubauer Collegium for Culture and Society, the Humanities Division, and the Center for the Study of Race, Politics, and Culture at the University of Chicago.

For any questions, please contact slavicult@gmail.com.

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Faculty Coordinators

Larissa Brewer-García (Romance Languages and Literatures): brewergarcia@uchicago.edu

Agnes Lugo-Ortiz (Romance Languages and Literatures): lugortiz@uchicago.edu

Danielle Roper (Romance Languages and Literatures): droper@uchicago.edu

Christopher Taylor (English): chtaylor@uchicago.edu

Allyson Nadia Field (Cinema and Media Studies): anfield@uchicago.edu

For administrative matters or special assistance for the events, please contact our graduate student assistant, Cristina Esteves-Wolff (cesteveswolff@uchicago.edu)