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Brown Bag Lunch with Charmaine A. Nelson
BGC Fields of the Future Fellow; NSCAD University

Thursday, October 21, 12:15–1:15 pm on Zoom

Charmaine A. Nelson will give a Brown Bag Lunch presentation entitled “Justice, Property, and Punishment: The Role of Montreal Sheriff Edward William Gray in Eighteenth-Century Quebec Slavery.”

The institution of Transatlantic Slavery was premised upon slave owner control and enacted through systematized violence, surveillance, and prohibitions imposed by slave owners and their surrogates. While white male overseers and slave patrols and black male slave drivers became normal aspects of tropical and semi-tropical plantation slavery, in Canada where cold winters made year-round mono-crop agriculture impossible, male adjuncts to slave owner power took other forms. This talk explores the role of the sheriff in eighteenth-century British slavery in the province of Quebec to understand the significant ways that the work of this British colonial official served to justify, sustain, and support slavery.

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The Archaeological Encounters Seminar with Felipe Gaitan-Ammann
BGC Scholar-in-Residence; Los Andes University

Tuesday, October 26, 6:00–7:30 pm on Zoom

Felipe Gaitan-Ammann will deliver a lecture entitled “Through the Priest’s Ear: An Entangled Story of Life and Death at the Jesuit Church of San Ignacio, 1610–2021.” Gaitan-Ammann will be the Scholar-in-Residence at BGC during the week of October 25–29, 2021.

This seminar will examine multiple avenues of interdisciplinary research arising from a vast archaeological dataset recently recovered at the Jesuit church of San Ignacio – one of the most significant colonial buildings still standing in the historical district of Bogotá, Colombia. The evidence excavated at San Ignacio testifies to over four centuries of domestic, funerary, spiritual, and bodily practices which, in turn, mirror complex processes of identity construction in a particularly isolated urban area of the Spanish colonial empire. By exploring the analytical possibilities of this rich collection of skeletal, artifactual, and archival information, we not only suggest new developments and directions in Latin American historical archaeology, but also partake in important initiatives of memory construction currently permeating all layers of Colombian social and political life. Ultimately, this seminar explores the part that archaeological heritage could and should play in new, multilayered instances of memory-making. It addresses the uneasiness with which the effort to memorialize the physical evidence of death, either past or present, may be received and dealt with by a society deeply traumatized by war.

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The Museum Conversations Seminar with Ann-Sophie Lehmann
BGC Scholar-in-Residence; University of Groningen

Tuesday, November 2, 5:00–6:30 pm on Zoom

Ann-Sophie Lehmann will be delivering a talk entitled “Object Biography: The Life of a Concept.” Lehmann will be the Scholar-in-Residence at BGC during the week of November 1–5, 2021.

The object biography has gained popularity in art history, material culture studies, archaeology, history, conservation and restoration, and museum studies. As a concept, the biography creates attention for the individual trajectories of objects and how these change over time; it enables the connection of different approaches, usually dealt with by sub-disciplines (i.e. research into making, provenance, exhibition history, conservation, reception); it offers entry points even if no information is available and encourages interdisciplinarity as objects straddle many fields. Finally, the object biography stimulates new forms of writing because it lends the object a voice and foregrounds narrative. This talk presents a brief history and theory of the concept of the object-biography, from its literary and didactic origins in the eighteenth-century to its recent critics, asking what the concept can help us see, which we otherwise would not.

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All events will be held via Zoom. A link will be circulated to registrants on the day of the event. All events will be live with automatic captions.