Tuesday, February 01, 2011

"Slavery and the University" Conference and a Forthcoming Title

This fall, the University of Georgia Press will be publishing THE ACCIDENTAL SLAVEOWNER: REVISITING A MYTH OF RACE AND FINDING AN AMERICAN FAMILY by Mark Auslander. The book investigates the story of Catherine Boyd, "Miss Kitty," an enslaved woman whose owner was Bishop James Andrew, the first president of Emory University's board of trustees.

A podcast is available here where you can hear Auslander describe his research into Miss Kitty's history and read from the prologue of his book.

This week, Auslander will take part in a conference being held at Emory University to examine the history and legacy of slavery's role in higher education. Slavery and the University will include a keynote Thursday evening by Brown University president Ruth Simmons and a day of commemoration on Sunday in Oxford, GA led by Auslander. The conference is sponsored by Emory's Transforming Community Project, which is supported in part by the Ford Foundation; a full schedule and registration information can be found online here.

Emory celebrates its 175th anniversary this year, and as part of that commemoration, the board of trustees has recently issued a formal statement of regret for the history of the school's involvement with slavery.