An experiment in digital history pedagogy

This spring I will be teaching a freshman writing-intensive seminar on the rise and fall of Atlantic slavery using digital history tools.  A brief discussion of the course is included below.  I plan to use the Rice masterclass as a workshop for the course and will post updates on the preparation and progress of the course throughout the year.  Stay tuned for a soon-to-come reflection on course activities.

FWIS – The Rise and Fall of Atlantic Slavery

This writing intensive course will use tools in the digital humanities to explore the rise and fall of slavery through a transnational study of the Atlantic World, beginning with the fifteenth century European incursions into Africa and culminating in the nineteenth century abolition movements.  The students will learn to study the past in terms beyond the boundaries of nation-states.  The practice of slavery transformed Africa, Europe, and the Americas.  We live with the aftershocks of this institution today, and students will be encouraged to understand the global present as the legacy of a global past. Interspersed throughout the semester, we will focus on six key writing skills, including mastery of grammar, concision, argument, structure, interpretive synthesis, and, most importantly, rewriting.  Through a series of structured, progressive writing assignments, the students will work with digital technologies to conduct research, improve their writing, and present their work by constructing a collaborative website.

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