Last week, our director Damian Pargas and PhD candidates Marcella Schute and Christine Mertens participated in the international PhD seminar on Slavery, Servitude & Extreme Dependency in Hull at the Wilberforce Institute for the Study of Slavery and Emancipation. The yearly conference, which is organized in conjunction with Bonn University’s Center for Dependency and Slavery Studies and Leiden University, aims to facilitate academic exchange and the promotion of new avenues of inquiry on historical and modern cases of slavery, servitude, and other forms of extreme dependency.

Marcella presented on Louisiana’s participation in the Southern commercial conventions between 1855 and 1859 and their direct and indirect motivations to reopen the foreign slave trade.


Christine gave a presentation on the involvement of Virginian citizens and towns in the development of legislation targeting the mobility of free people of African descent during the late eighteenth century.