Institute for Advanced Study Presents

Posing Slaves for the Camera

Past event
Feb 24, 2022
sepia toned image of a Bongo tribe from 1882

Bongo tribe, Sudan. Louis Vossion, 1882

Eve Troutt Powell
Christopher H. Browne Distinguished Professor of History
University of Pennsylvania School of Arts & Sciences

This talk will explore a series of photos taken in 1882 by the French photographer and consul to Sudan, Louis Vossion.  Charged with producing a volume on the Sudanese population, Vossion tried to portray who were the typical races. Only a few years after the volume was published, the Mahdiyya had overtaken Khartoum.  By the time they were first seen in pictures in France, many of Vossion’s subjects were dead, in prison or in exile.

This event is free, open to all, and will be held via Zoom webinar. You will receive an automatic email reminder one day and one hour prior to the event including your registration link.

EVE TROUTT POWELL is the Christopher H. Browne Distinguished Professor of History and Africana Studies who teaches the history of the modern Middle East at the University of Pennsylvania. As a cultural historian, she emphasizes the exploration of literature and film in her courses. She is the author of Tell This in my Memory: Stories of Enslavement from Egypt, Sudan and the Ottoman Empire (Stanford University Press, 2012), A Different Shade of Colonialism: Egypt, Great Britain and the Mastery of the Sudan (University of California, 2003) and the co-author, with John Hunwick, of The African Diaspora in the Mediterranean Lands of Islam (Princeton Series on the Middle East, Markus Wiener Press, 2002). Troutt Powell received her B.A, M.A and PhD from Harvard University. Prior to coming to Penn she taught for ten years at The University of Georgia. She has received fellowships from the American Research Center in Egypt and the Social Science Research Council, and has been a fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton and at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. In 2003 she was named a MacArthur Foundation Fellow.

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