Two UCSB History faculty — Giuliana Perrone and Sherene Seikaly — have been awarded UC Presidents’ Research Fellowships in the Humanities, which will enable them to spend the 2018-2019 academic year working on their next monographs.
Professor Perrone’s project, Reconstructing the Law: Slavery in Post-Emancipation Southern Courts, tells the story of “legal Reconstruction,” which was the process by which all Southerners, including freedpeople, litigated the meaning and implications of emancipation. Professor Perrone’s monograph will argue that though the law recognized black freedom, true abolition remained elusive. Post-emancipation jurisprudence left legal and social assumptions about race and slavery embedded – and actionable – in American law.
Professor Seikaly’s project, From Baltimore to Beirut: On the Question of Palestine, charts an escape from nationalist confines. The central figure of the narrative is a Palestinian man who was at once a colonial officer and a colonized subject, an enslaver and a refugee. Professor Seikaly’s study will demonstrate how his trajectory from nineteenth century mobility across Baltimore and Sudan to twentieth century immobility in Lebanon places the question of Palestine in a global history of race, capital, slavery, and dispossession.