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The Mark of Slavery and Between Fitness and Death Virtual Book Launch

Event Type
University of Illinois Press
wifi event
Apr 13, 2021   12:00 pm  

Join Jenifer L. Barclay, author of The Mark of Slavery: Disability, Race, and Gender in Antebellum America and Stefanie Hunt-Kennedy, author of Between Fitness and Death: Disability and Slavery in the Caribbean for an event celebrating the release of their books on April 13 at 12pm ET. Daina Ramey Berry will moderate.


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*This event will be captioned.


About The Mark of Slavery
Jenifer L. Barclay examines the ubiquitous narratives that depicted black people with disabilities as pitiable, monstrous, or comical, narratives used not only to defend slavery but also to argue against it. As she shows, this relationship between ableism and racism impacted racial identities during the antebellum period and played an overlooked role in shaping American history afterward. Barclay also illuminates the everyday lives of the ten percent of enslaved people who lived with disabilities. Prescient in its analysis and rich in detail, "The Mark of Slavery" is a powerful addition to the intertwined histories of disability, slavery, and race. This book is in the Disability Histories series edited by Kim Nielsen and Michael Rembis. 


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About Between Fitness and Death
Stefanie Hunt-Kennedy provides a three-pronged analysis of disability in the context of Atlantic slavery. First, she examines the connections of enslavement and representations of disability and the parallel development of English anti-black racism. From there, she moves from realms of representation to reality in order to illuminate the physical, emotional, and psychological impairments inflicted by slavery and endured by the enslaved. Finally, she looks at slave law as a system of enforced disablement. Audacious and powerful, Between Fitness and Death is a groundbreaking journey into the entwined histories of racism and ableism. This book is in the Disability Histories series edited by Kim Nielsen and Michael Rembis.


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About Jenifer L. Barclay: 
Jenifer L. Barclay is an Assistant Professor in the Department of History at the University at Buffalo. She received her Ph.D. in history from Michigan State University and her work has been supported by a pre-doctoral fellowship at the University of Virginia’s Carter G. Woodson Institute for African American and African Studies (2009–2011) and a postdoctoral fellowship in African American Studies at Case Western Reserve University (2011-12). Barclay is an associate editor for Review of Disability Studies: An International Journal and her first book, The Mark of Slavery: Disability, Race, and Gender in Antebellum America, appears in the University of Illinois Press’s cutting-edge book series “Disability Histories.” Barclay is also planning an edited collection with Stefanie Hunt-Kennedy, Cripping the Archive: Disability, Power, and History, and has begun work on her second project, Between Two Worlds: Disability and Segregation in Southern Education from Emancipation to Integration. She has published several articles and book chapters in journals and collections such as Slavery & AbolitionWomen, Gender, and Families of Color; and The Oxford Handbook on Disability History.
About Stefanie Hunt-Kennedy:
Stefanie Hunt-Kennedy is an Associate Professor of Caribbean, Atlantic World, and Disability History at the University of New Brunswick. She received her PhD from the University of Toronto where her dissertation won the Michael Finlayson Award for Most Outstanding Dissertation. Hunt-Kennedy recently published her first book, Between Fitness and Death: Disability and Slavery in the Caribbean, in the University of Illinois Press’ Disability Histories Series. She has authored several articles and book chapters that appear in journals such as Slavery & Abolition and Social Identities. Hunt-Kennedy is currently collaborating with Dr. Jenifer Barclay on an edited collection entitled, Cripping the Archive: Disability, Power, and History. In addition to this, she is the primary investigator of The Anglo-Atlantic Slave Law Project, a website that will provide worldwide access to the British Atlantic slave laws from the earliest comprehensive codes of the seventeenth century to the laws that governed emancipation in the nineteenth century. This project is supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council and has an anticipated launch date of September 2022.


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