Slavery and Migrations in the Atlantic World, 1500-1850 (HIST*2340) | College of Arts

Slavery and Migrations in the Atlantic World, 1500-1850 (HIST*2340)

Code and section: HIST*2340*01

Term: Fall 2021

Instructor: Femi Kolapo


Method of delivery

HYRBID: The course will be split evenly between virtual and face to face class hours, with the possibility of reassigning some of the face-to-face hours to asynchronous class time for independent work on group chapters. The class will decide together which of the Monday or Wednesday class should be virtual or face-to-face.

Course Synopsis

In this course, both students and the professor will study and compare the history of two streams of unfree transatlantic and transcontinental population migrations (Africans and Indians) and in the process write a small textbook on it. The first stream of this population movements is the forced migration of enslaved Africans, specifically to the Caribbean Islands, up to the 19th–century abolition of the slave trade. The second is the indentured labor migration of Indians following the abolition of the slave trade, again, to the Caribbean Isles. 
In a series of brief introductory lectures, the professor will discuss basic topics, concepts, and issues and tentative outlines or basic plans for the chapters to make up this book. 

The class will be divided into collaborative groups each of which would be responsible for writing one of the chapters for the book using, on the one hand, readily available secondary and primary source evidence that will be provided/suggested, and on the other, supplementary source evidence that they will independently source.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, student will have learned to:

  1. source and identify primary and secondary historical and other sources relevant to studying the topic and writing a book about it.
  2. assess the local and global forces involved in the creation, distribution, maintenance and eradication of these labor types.
  3. apply the comparative historical method to elucidate concepts and explicate historical moments and forces relevant to the creation of the African and Indian diasporas in the Atlantic world.
  4. appreciate the different perspectives that inform the interpretation of historical texts and evidence regarding the use of indentured labor.
  5. practice critical reading, critical thinking, and critical analysis 
  6. develop writing skills in the process of writing their book chapter and proof-reading it with the guidance of writing experts (to be sourced from either the library or an interested publishing company).



Method of Evaluation and Weights

  • 15%  Test on introductory lectures (early midterm)                        
  • 70%  Book writing project    (much of this to be accomplished during virtual asynchronous work). Each member of a group will be required to:
    • identify 1 new secondary source relevant to the topic (to supplement those provided in course outline)
    • summarize two sources (inclusive of the newly sourced material).
    • Identify questions the sources raise/answers they provide on the book chapter topic.
    • integrate insights from them into the proper section in the group’s chapter outline.
    • participate in editing group chapter.
    • participate in preparing/presenting final draft of chapter to the class
    • participate with your group in using a rubric to be supplied to evaluate chapters other than group members’ own chapter.
  • 15%  Final written work
    • short review or commentary (500-700 words) on one draft chapter in the book other than the student’s chapter 


  • reflection essay on the textbook writing experience (800-1000 words).                 

Required Texts: 

Links to assigned reading materials will be on Course Reserve, Course Link, or will otherwise be freely available via OMNI or Google search.

**Please note:  This is a preliminary web course description only.  The department reserves the right to change without notice any information in this description.  The final, binding course outline will be distributed in the first class of the semester.**