News and events

The real history of slavery in Canada

Dr. Charmaine A. Nelson. Photo: Meghan Tansey Whitton

Vritual Fellow Talks

Amanda Trager, October 19, 2022, 1-2 p.m. ADT.

Since founding and NSCAD’s Institute for the Study of Canadian Slavery, Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in Transatlantic Black Diasporic Art & Community Engagement  Dr. Charmaine Nelson has delivered diverse presentations and media interviews examining the history of slavery in Canada.

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View previous issues:
Issue 1, September 2021
Issue 2, Fall 2021
Issue 3, Winter 2022
Issue 4, Spring/Summer 2022


Upcoming events

Emily Draicchio: Virtual Fellow Talk

Wednesday, October 12, 2022
noon – 1 p.m. ADT

Webinar Link:

Passcode: VMd66k

Emily Draicchio shares her progress on locating, documenting, and analysing slave quarter sites in New Brunswick’s Loyalist Landscape (moderated by Dr. Charmaine A. Nelson).

Amanda Trager: Virtual Fellow Talk
Wednesday, October 19, 2022
1-2 p.m. ADT

Webinar Link:

Passcode: Y43BFA

Amanda Trager shares her journey into the world of Portuguese-born enslaved black female Marie-Josèph Angélique and the French-born white indentured servant Claude Thibault through experimental film practice (moderated by Dr. Charmaine A. Nelson).

For accessibility inquiries or for details to join the webinars by phone, email

Past events

Virtual Fellows’ Talks and Panels

Tyshan Wright, April 20, 2022

Fragments of Slavery from the Archives and BritishChris J. Gismondi, April 13, 2022

Black History Month Fellows Panel, February 15, 2022

Dressing for the Resistance: Style as Amour Among Black Canadians. Jason Cyrus – January 18, 2022

Freedom is No Game.  Tonya “Sam’Gwan” Paris December 14, 2021

The Canadian Press on “quant à ce qui concerne Bahia”: White fear, Racism and the International News Coverage of the Muslim African slave rebellions. Bruno R. Véras – December 2, 2021

Dr. Nelson’s presentations and workshops

Fictions of Emancipation: Carpeaux Recast presented by the Metropolitain Museum of Art, New York City – April 28, 2022

Slavery North: Excavating Canadian Slavery and Other Un(der)studied Sites – March 31 – April 2, 2002

The Precariousness of Freedom: Slave Resistance as Experience, Process, and Representation presented by the University of Windsor Office of the Vice-President, Equity, Diversity & Inclusion – March 21, 2022

‘She commonly wears a Handkerchief round her Head’: Expanding and Complicating the Concept of Creolization for the study of Transatlantic Slavery presented by the 2022 Vickers-Verduyn Annual Lecture in Canadian Studies – March 10, 2022

He ‘is supposed to have with him forged Certificates of his Freedom, and Passes’: Slavery, Mobility, and the Creolized Counter-Knowledge of Resistance” presented by the African Studies Students’ Association of McGill – February 24, 2022

He ‘is supposed to have with him forged Certificates of his Freedom, and Passes’: Slavery, Mobility, and the Creolized Counter-Knowledge of Resistance” presented by the MSVU Research Office as part of its Black and Indigenous Speaker series – February 4, 2022

“She commonly wears a handkerchief round her head” presented by the Humanities Research Group at the University of Windsor – October 26, 2021

Unravelling the Mystery: Edmonia Lewis and Bute presented by the Mount Stuart Trust – October 22, 2021

Confronting exclusion and redefining heritage goals presented by the National Trust for Canada Conference – September 30, 2021,

*N.B. This was a paid registration  ($75 for students – more information here)

What former enslaved people celebrated in 1834 with slavery’s demise in the British Empire presented by NS Department of Communities, Culture and Heritage – August 10, 2021

A Conversation with Charmaine Nelson presented by the Thomas Moore Institute – May 28, 2021

A Hidden History: Slavery in Canada – May 14, 2021

Grappling with the Colonial Archive: An Introduction to Canadian Slavery  – March 2, 2021

Graduate Student Panel on Transatlantic Slavery – February 25, 2021


Media interviews

CBC Mainstreet (July 25, 2022) – Charmaine Nelson on enslaved people, economics, and resistance

CBC Mainstreet (July 21, 2022)  – How one woman’s love for her children defied the system of slavery: Part 2

CBC Mainstreet (July 20, 2022)  – What resistance looked like for enslaved people in Canada: Part 1

CBC Mainstreet (July 19, 2022) – How accusations of ‘grooming’ are being used once again to discredit and divide public opinion against Black and queer people in particular

CBC Mainstreet (April 1, 2022) – Students discuss the ‘Slavery North, The Visual Culture of Slavery’ exhibit at the Anna Leonowens Gallery

CBC Radio One (August 1, 2021) – Emancipation Day and confronting Canada’s history of slavery

The Coast (July 29, 2021) – What Canada’s first Emancipation Day means