Welcome to Black History Month! which is now an established part of the yearly cultural calender. First celebrated in the USA, Black History Month has for the past 30 years has been celebrated in the UK in October each year. In the Netherlands, Black History Month has been celebrated since 2010 and in 2016 onward has been christened as Black Achievement Month on the initiative of the National Institute of Dutch Slavery Past and Heritage (NiNsee).
There are a number of events organised by institutions, companies and individuals during Black History (Achievement) Month that seeks to highlight the ordinary everyday history, heritage, contribution and achievement of people of African descent around the world. Check out the listings here https://www.blackhistorymonth.org.uk/ for events you can follow online.
I am privileged to have been invited to deliver a lecture session on my research as part of the activities being organised by the University of Exeter Business School for Black History (Achievement) Month – thanks Oliver Young for the invitation. There are a number of events taking place as part of this celebration so do check them out here https://business-school.exeter.ac.uk/black-history-month/
My session is tentatively titlted “Geographies of slavery heritage tourism: places of remembrance and dialogue”. I am using this lecture opportunity to outline my research agenda on the transformative potential of slavery heritage tourism practices and performances. In particular, I want to sketch out how slavery heritage tourism provide spaces for remembrance and dialogue about slavery’s past and present in terms of discrimation, racism and ongoing #blacklivesmatter demonstrations across various geographical locations.
This is going to be an online Zoom lecture that is free. Details are as follows:
Date: Wednesday 14 October, 2020
Time: 17.00 – 18.00 (CET), 16.00 – 17.00 (BST), 15.00 – 16.00 (GH Time)
Registration: see below
Registration is free without cost for anyone and will enable you to get access to the pass code for the Zoom meeting. Use this link https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/geographies-of-slavery-heritage-tourism-places-of-remembrance-and-dialogue-tickets-120011061315 or see embedded link below:
I am looking forward to this and hope to see you online.
The event blurb I sent back in August is below….
In an increasing multicultural society, the stories we tell of the past can bring us together or push us further apart. Through travel and tourism we encounter new cultures and perspectives on such stories of the past in certain places. The stories of slavery as told through slavery heritage tourism, is not merely ready-made but actively produced being open to misunderstanding and contestations. However, little is known about the cultural work of tourism in producing slavery heritage spaces and how it contributes to the ensuing transformations of contested narratives about the past.
This lecture focuses on the diverse forms of tourism practices and performances at slavery heritage sites across different geographical locations: Elmina Castle in Ghana, Gorée Island in Senegal, Liverpool Slavery Trail, Bristol Transatlantic Slavery Walk, Slavery & the City Walk in London, Black Heritage Tours in Amsterdam, Black Pioneers Tour in the Hague, Plantation Tours in the US and Plantation Tours in the Caribbean among other places.
The lecture starts from developing the conceptual notion of the embodied absence of the past to refer to the physical presence but narrative absence of the shared history and role of people of African descent in European societies. The aim is to illustrate the cultural work of slavery heritage tourism in making visible and challenging this embodied absence of the past. A key aim of this lecture is therefore to highlight the transformative potential of tourism in stimulating remembrance and dialogue about the effects of slavery in contemporary societies.
The speaker, Dr. Emmanuel Akwasi Adu-Ampong is an Assistant Professor in Cultural Geography at Wageningen University and Research, The Netherlands. His research interest span across slavery heritage tourism, sustainable tourism development policy and planning, cultural heritage management and innovations in qualitative research methodology & methods.