Wednesday, December 10, 2008

The Black Atlantic

I just finished writing a historiographical paper on the "Black Atlantic," a.k.a. the community of Africans who traveled throughout the Atlantic world in the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries. These men and women were sailors, slaves, abolitionists, writers, and others. Their contributions to the economic, sociopolitical, and intellectual world of the Atlantic have become the focus of the recent work of historians.

The idea of the Black Atlantic has also inspired artists, as I found out in my research. Here is an exhibition review from 2005 that looked at a "Black Atlantic" themed art exhibit (from whence came the above image). The exhibit was held at the Haus der Kulkturen der Welt (House of World Cultures) in Berlin. It's an interesting look at how four German artists used the framing device of the Black Atlantic and interpreted it in new ways.

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