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Lecture: “A North African Slave Advocating for Abolition in the US” with M’hamed Oualdi (Sciences Po-Paris)
November 9, 2020 | 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm
In 1864 as the Civil War raged in the United States, a Circassian manumitted slave and Tunisian official named Husayn advocated for the abolition of slavery in the US. In response to a query from the American consul in Tunis wondering about the effect of slavery in Tunisia, Husayn replied that he truly believed that “universal liberty and the non-existence of slavery have a deep effect on refining a man’s manners as well as on the development of culture.” Through this specific case, we will look at the roots of Husayn’s abolitionist thinking and what Husayn’s story might tell us about slavery in Ottoman Tunisia and the historiography of modern North Africa.
M’hamed Oualdi is professor of history at Sciences Po-Paris. He is a historian of Early Modern and Modern North Africa.
Moderated by Adam Mestyan, assistant professor in the History Department of Duke University.
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Organized by Duke Middle East Studies Center, Duke Islamic Studies Center (DISC), Dept. of History and Duke-UNC Consortium for Middle East Studies.