Matthew Lee, one of the schools PhD students, has co-organised a conference on North-East Scotland's historic ties to colonialism. The event brings together academics and independent scholars who will present their research on the region's links to colonial endeavours, and is due to take place 17 and 18 June.
Scotland has deep historic connections to colonial projects in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, including the Atlantic slavery and the colonisation of South Asia. These ties have come under increasing scrutiny in recent years, particularly in the light of the conversations generated by Black Lives Matter protests. Much of the public discussion about this history has centred on Glasgow and Edinburgh, which obscures Aberdeen and the wider North-East’s strong historic ties to colonial endeavours. This conference has been organised to give academics and independent scholars the opportunity to discuss their research on the region’s deep ties to colonialism, with a specific focus on the Caribbean and India. In addition to showcasing the growing body of research on North-East Scotland’s links to colonialism in the past, the conference will provide a space to reflect on their ongoing significance in the present. The conference has been co-organised with Dr Eloise Grey – a recent graduate from the School of Divinity, History and Philosophy – and Dr Désha Osborne of Hunter College, City University of New York. The event is supported by University of Aberdeen Special Collections and Museums, and the Institute for the Advanced Study of the Humanities at the University of Edinburgh.