Hilary Jones on “Studying West Africa in the French Atlantic World”

Monday, June 1, 2020

Thomas Thurston talks with Hilary Jones on her project titled “From Senegambia to the French Caribbean: Studying West Africa in the French Atlantic World”.

Dr. Hilary Jones is an Associate Professor of History and Core Faculty in the African and African Diaspora Studies Program at Florida International University.  Jones’ research interests concern West Africa, French empire, the Francophone Atlantic World, comparative race and slavery and Africa’s urban and gender histories. In her research and teaching she pays close attention to the inter-connected histories of Africa, Europe, and the Americas.

Hilary Jones’ book, The Métis of Senegal: Urban Life and Politics in French West Africa (Indiana University Press, 2013) examines Senegal’s colonial capital through the lens of people of mixed racial ancestry. Based on fieldwork conducted in Senegal and France, this study examines mixed race identity and society in West Africa from the end of the transatlantic slave trade to the beginning of the colonial era. In relying on public and private archival sources, Jones places Senegal’s Atlantic ports in conversation with scholarship on hybridity, Creolization, globalization, and the colonial encounter. Dr. Jones’ research has appeared in the Journal of African History, the International Journal of African Historical Studies, and Slavery and Abolition, as well as in several edited volumes. Recently she contributed to the volumes New Orleans, Louisiana and Saint Louis, Senegal: Mirror Cities in the Atlantic World, 1659-2000s (Louisiana State University Press, 2019), African Women in the Atlantic World: Property, Vulnerability, and Mobility 1680-1880 (James Currey Press, 2019) and Black French Women and the Struggle for Equality 1848-2015 (University of Nebraska Press, 2018).