I am an Assistant Professor of Africana Studies at UNC Charlotte, where my fields of research and teaching are: African Diaspora Studies; Historical Sociology; Social Movements & Contentious Politics; Postcolonial Sociology; Race and Ethnicity; Women and Gender Studies; 18th-19th Century Caribbean; and the Digital Humanities.
My interdisciplinary research looks at issues of consciousness, culture and identity in micro-mobilization processes among members of the African Diaspora, especially late eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century enslaved people’s rebellions. I specifically focus on the influence of African-inspired sacred rituals on oppositional consciousness and patterns of escape from enslavement before the Haitian Revolution. I rely heavily on archival data, including content analysis of digitally archived runaway slave advertisements. These allow me to ask questions about the role of race and ethnicity, gender, social ties, and forms of human and social capital used in runaways’ attempts to liberate themselves.
My research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, the John Carter Brown Library, as well as the African American Intellectual History Society. I have conducted research at the national archives of France in Paris and Aix-en-Provence, the University of Florida at Gainesville, the Schomburg Center, as well as in Cap-Haïtien, Port-au-Prince, Jérémie, and Jacmel, Haiti. I have presented my work at national and international forums, such as the Notre Dame Center for the Study of Social Movements Young Scholars Conference; the Association for the Study of the Worldwide African Diaspora Biennial Conference; and the International Sociological Association World Congress of Sociology.
I hold a dual major PhD in African American & African Studies and Sociology from Michigan State University, and I am a native of Ypsilanti, MI.