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History Department's Annual Low Lecture

with Kevin Dawson, UC Merced


Library and Gallery, Albin O. Kuhn : Gallery

Date & Time

April 16, 2024, 4:00 pm5:30 pm


Kevin Dawson, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of History
University of California, Merced

Liquid Motion:
Canoeing and Surfing in Atlantic Africa and the Diaspora, 1444-1888

“Liquid Motion” examines how African women and men perceived, understood, and interacted with oceans and rivers through swimming, underwater diving, surfing, canoe-making, and canoeing. Africans inspire us to rethink assumptions about maritime history, by considering maritime traditions that Westerns lacked. Enslaved Africans carried these maritime traditions to the Americas, where they used them to benefit their exploited lives and enslavers exploited them to generate wealth.

Organized by the Department of History and cosponsored by the Center for Social Science Scholarship.