NYU prof to discuss Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade in talk at Rowan

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New York University professor Michael Gomez, an expert in the African Diaspora, will kick off Rowan University's month-long commemoration of the 200th anniversary of the abolition of the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade with a lecture on Tuesday, Feb. 5, at 12:15 p.m. in the Eynon Ballroom of the Chamberlain Student Center.

New York University professor Michael Gomez, an expert in the African Diaspora, will kick off Rowan University's month-long commemoration of the 200th anniversary of the abolition of the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade with a lecture on Tuesday, Feb. 5, at 12:15 p.m. in the Eynon Ballroom of the Chamberlain Student Center.

Gomez will present "The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade: Should We Forget and Move On?" His talk will focus on the scope, the legacies, and the overall global and intergenerational impact of the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade. The lecture is part of Rowan's observance of African-American History Month, which will commemorate the anniversary of the abolition of the slave trade.

Though the abolition occurred two centuries ago, the topic is timely, says Corann Okorodudu, a Rowan psychology professor who also is coordinator of the University's African-American Studies program.

"Just six years ago, New Jersey passed the Amistad Bill, requiring schools to teach about the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade and the contributions of African-Americans to American and global developments," says Okorodudu. "And on Jan. 7 of this year, the Legislature passed a bill apologizing for its role in the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade and Slavery.

"The lecture by Dr. Gomez will address the silence about and denial of responsibility for slavery and, correspondingly, denial of responsibility for the racism and social problems to which 400 years of slavery are linked."

Gomez is a professor of history and Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies at NYU. From 2000-2007, he served as director of the Study of the Worldwide African Diaspora. He formerly taught at the University of Georgia, Spelman College, and Washington University in St. Louis, Mo.

Gomez is the author of four books: Black Crescent: African Muslims in the Americas (2005), which was honored by the Black Caucus of the American Library Association; Reversing Sail: A History of the African Diaspora (2005); Exchanging Our Country Marks: The Transformation of African Identities in the Colonial and Antebellum South (1998); and Pragmatism in the Age of Jihad: The Precolonial State of Bundu (1992).

The lecture is co-sponsored by African-American Studies, the African-American History Month Committee, the History Department, and the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

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