“Africa in the Age of Abolition”
Dr Bronwen Everill (Gonville and Caius)
The last Michaelmas Term meeting of the Confraternitas took place in the Knox Shaw Room on a Thursday, yet another sign that the Confraternitas has strayed from its sacred traditions. Our guest, Dr Everill, spoke about West Africa in the late 18th and early 19th centuries.
Dr Everill sketched out in great detail the trade networks and polities involved in the West African slave trade, focusing primarily on the West Africans rather than the Europeans. She reconstructed an era where political expansion, shifting balance of power and Muslim religious movements added to unrest and change in the region. Dr Everill’s talk pushed particularly hard against simplistic accounts of abolition, by illustrating the various agents driving it, particularly the indigenous ones, and their often very ambiguous motives.
The talk was followed by a barrage of questions; fortunately, we had the time to entertain all of them. The Princeps adjourned the meeting and members of the Confraternitas joined Dr Everill for formal dinner.
Camille Houghton-Grimshaw (Magister Rotulorum)
Christos-Stavros Konstantopoulos (Princeps Senatus)