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Can cultural engagement and academic research change
the world?
—We Think so!

Slavery North is a one-of-a-kind academic and cultural destination where scholars, thinkers, artists, and cultural producers build community and produce research and cultural outcomes that transform our understanding of the neglected histories of Transatlantic Slavery in Canada and the American North

Slavery North seeking to advance social justice

By recuperating and interrogating the complex histories of Transatlantic Slavery and European colonization of the Americas, and recovering the cultures, experiences, lives, and resistance of enslaved peoples in Canada and the American North. We do this by building a supportive research community through fellowships, programs, events, publications, media work, and education.

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Historical Archive

Slavery North is a research institute that was established in 2022. It combines a focus on slavery in Canada and the American North. It is an international first.

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More About Us

Slavery North is a research institute that was established in 2022. It combines a focus on slavery in Canada and the American North.

Learn more

Mandate Areas

Before there was Canada and the USA, there was British North America.

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News & Events

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graphic with the text: job opportunity, events and media relations manager


Job Opportunity: Events & Media Relations Manager

by Dr. Charmaine Nelson

Portrait of Charmaine A. Nelson with arms crossed


Mellon Foundation Awards UMass Amherst $2.65 Million to Expand Slavery North Initiative, Led by Art Historian Charmaine A. Nelson

by Dr. Charmaine Nelson

Old sepia tone portrait of a man in a suit jacket


CBC | This Canadian won a global art prize in 1876. When the judges found out he was Black, they tried to reverse it

by Dr. Charmaine Nelson

As an artist-in-residence fellow, I welcomed the opportunity to research and create ‘Between Slavery and Sovereignty.’

I believe that however painful and unpleasant the past is, there is the possibility to create something beautiful and healing out of the pain.

Tyshan Wright, artist-in-residence fellow (Winter 2022)

My time as an artist-in-residence fellow had a profoundly positive impact on my development as an artist.

I would highly recommend that any establishing artist consider taking up such an opportunity in the future.

Tonya “Sam'Gwan” Paris, artist-in-residence fellow (Fall 2021)

The fellowship put me in touch with an incredible cohort of scholars and artists

from which many fruitful conversations have been had across research sites and disciplines.

Chris Gismondi, gradutate student fellow (Winter 2022)

The mandate and practice invites critical enquiry of slavery by fellows coming from both artistic and scholarly backgrounds.

Putting together these two groups in real dialogue allows for original artistic production firmly based on research and academic formal work built through new conceptual questions and community-centred problematizations.

Bruno R. Véras, graduate student fellow (Fall 2021)

The fellowship gave me — a non-POC visual artist — a pathway into the scholarly grounding needed

for my area of interest, and support for my unconventional approach. It has given me confidence to meaningfully, responsibly, and creatively engage with difficult histories.

Amanda Trager, graduate student fellow (Spring / Summer 2022)

Before there was Canada and the USA,
there was British North America.

Historical Archive

Browse our extensive historical archive and find articles using our various filters…

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There is no other dedicated, specialized initiative of this kind in the world. Let us tell you more about our ground-breaking work.

Doctor Charmaine A. Nelson

Dr. Charmaine A. Nelson Director & Provost Professor of Art History

Is supported in this work by wonderful Research Assistants, an esteemed Advisory Board, affiliated centres, and dedicated staff at the University of Massachusetts.

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