Slavery and Freedom: Material and Visual Histories [2021-22]

Alternate Tuesdays 17.00 – 19.00 during term time, unless otherwise noted

Online sessions until further notice.


Slavery & Freedom: Material and Visual Histories is an interdisciplinary research network that focuses on connecting researchers working on transnational histories of enslavement, resistance, abolition, and the afterlives of transatlantic slavery.

This network brings together researchers from many fields, including archaeology, history, geology, art history, archival studies, natural history, and material science. Material and visual histories are defined broadly here, including archaeological and anthropological artefacts, scientific collections, museum specimens and objects, archival material, and artworks. Researchers will meet for workshops to share methodologies and resources, and develop multidisciplinary frameworks of interpreting and understanding objects.

The theme of material and visual histories allows for a broad range of objects to be discussed, with the potential to uncover links between material collections in universities, museums, archives and other memory institutions. Through our events, this network aims to build bridges between researchers, disciplines, and institutions.

Throughout the 2021 - 2022 academic year, the Slavery & Freedom: Material and Visual Histories network will host lectures, panel discussions, and researcher workshops centred around object conversations.



To receive event notices or express an interest in taking part in the workshops, please contact: Danika Parikh
Administrative assistance:



Danika Parikh (Research and Engagement Fellow, University of Cambridge Museums, University of Cambridge)
Jake Subryan Richards (Assistant Professor, Department of International History, the London School of Economics)
Sabine Cadeau (Legacies of Enslavement Project Research Fellow, Centre for African Studies, University of Cambridge)


Danika Parikh is Research and Engagement Fellow at University of Cambridge Museums (UCM). She is an archaeologist whose research interests include the material culture of the Indus Civilisation and South Asia, ruralism and urbanism, and the relationship between empire and archaeology. She previously co-founded the award-winning Untold Histories tours, and is leading the RePresent Project.  Parikh has published articles in World Archaeology and the European Journal of Archaeology. She is a founding member of the European Society of Black and Allied Archaeologists. Parikh is working with UCM on a major project to investigate the legacies of empire and enslavement across the collections.


Jake Subryan Richards is Assistant Professor of International History at the LSE. His first book project analyzes the abolition of the transatlantic slave trade as a violent legal regime. Richards has published articles in Past & Present and Comparative Studies in Society and History. Richards is working with the University of Cambridge Museums on a major project to investigate the histories of enslavement and empire in the Museums’ collections.


Sabine Cadeau is a Research Fellow, University of Cambridge Legacies of Enslavement Project; Research Associate, Queens’ College Cambridge.


Faculty Advisors

Dr Peggy Brunache (Director of the Beniba Centre for Slavery Studies, University of Glasgow)
Professor Marcos Martinón-Torres (Pitt-Rivers Professor of Archaeological Science, Department of Archaeology, University of Cambridge)
Dr Nicholas Guyatt (Reader in North American History, Faculty of History, University of Cambridge)

Programme 2021-22

Michaelmas Term 2021

Slavery and Freedom
Slavery & Freedom: Material and Visual Histories – An Interdisciplinary Conversation
19 October 2021, Online event (UK time)

Peggy Brunache (Glasgow), Miranda Lowe (London), Temi Odumosu (Malmö)

Download the event poster here

Slavery & Freedom: Material and Visual Histories Workshop
02 November 2021, Online event (UK time)

Justin Dunnavant (California), Stanley Griffin (West Indies), Mary-Ann Middelkoop (Cambridge).

Slavery & Freedom: Material and Visual Histories Workshop
30 November 2021, Online event (UK time)

Jack Ashby (Cambridge), Ayana Flewellen (California), Chiedza Mhondoro (Independent scholar)