Lincoln and Emancipation: New Considerations

November 1, 2013
2:30-5:00 PM, reception to follow
Crystal Room, Alumnae Hall
194 Meeting Street 

Lincoln and Emancipation: New Considerations

The occasion of this symposium is the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation issued by President Abraham Lincoln in 1863. As part of the Center for the Study of Slavery and Justice's ongoing consideration of the many legacies of American slavery in contemporary American life, this event will feature lectures by two prominent scholars of Lincoln, slavery, and the law: Kate Masur (Northwestern University) and Martha Jones (University of Michigan). Their presentations will each focus on contemporary American culture and media, particularly the way in which we inhabit a historical moment where Lincoln's role in ending slavery is not merely remembered but often glorified. What does national cultural memory of Lincoln and Emancipation say about the contemporary US? How does commemorating Lincoln reflect on our own culture today?

The format will include two 30-minute lectures followed by commentaries by Professor Barrymore Bogues and Professor Philip Gould. The audience will be invited to comment and ask questions. A short reception will follow.Co-sponsored by the Black Heritage Series of the Third World Center.

Prof. Kate Masur : Spielberg's Lincoln and the Roots of Reconstruction.

Prof. Kate Masur is associate professor of History and African American Studies at Northwestern University and the author of An Example for All the Land: Emancipation and the Struggle over Equality in Washington, D.C.  She has published prize-winning scholarly articles about emancipation during the Civil War and, most recently, a piece about African American federal employees in Washington during and after the war. She has also written for the New York Times’s Civil War series, Disunion, and about Stephen Spielberg’s Lincoln.  

Prof. Martha Jones: Emancipation as Translation: How Lincoln's Proclamation Became Law

Prof. Martha S. Jones is associate chair of the Department of Afroamerican and African Studies, associate professor of history and Afroamerican and African Studies, and a member of the Law School's Affiliated LSA Faculty. She is co-director of the Michigan Law Program in Race, Law & History and the Law in Slavery and Freedom Project. Her scholarly interests include the history of race, citizenship, slavery, and the rights of women in the United States and the Atlantic world. She holds a PhD in history from Columbia University and a JD from the CUNY School of Law. Prior to joining the Michigan faculty she was a public interest litigator for the HIV Law Project and MFY Legal Services, where her work focused on the rights of people with disabilities. In 1994, she was a Charles H. Revson Fellow on the Future of the City of New York at Columbia University.

Prof. Jones is a member of the publications committee of the American Society for Legal History and a distinguished lecturer for the Organization of American Historians. In 2008, she served as a visiting scholar at the University of Pennsylvania Law School and the National Constitution Center. In 2012, she was co-curator (with Clayton Lews) of "Proclaiming Emancipation," an exhibit marking the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation. Prof. Jones is the author of All Bound Up Together: The Woman Question in African American Public Culture, 1830-1900 (2007). Her current projects include two books: Overturning Dred Scott: Race, Rights, and Citizenship in Antebellum America and Riding the Atlantic World Circuit: Slavery and Freedom in the Era of the Haitian Revolution.


Free and Open to the Public

(Photo credits Ruba Aleryani)