We are delighted to welcome Dr Ryan Handley of the University of Oxford to give a talk on Black Preachers in Georgian Portsmouth.
The talk is supported by Dr Jodi Burkett’s Citizenship, ‘Race’ and Belonging (CRaB) network and raises some interesting ideas about migration and cultural clashes in a naval port town. This is especially pertinent as October is Black History Month, and would be a welcome perspective to our PTUC methodology.
The event will take place on Monday 31st October at The University of Portsmouth, Dennis Sciama building, DS2.14, Burnaby Road, Portsmouth, PO1 3FX. It is scheduled for 6pm, refreshments from 5.30pm.
Portsmouth is not the first place that springs to mind when we imagine the eighteenth-century black British presence. But, as ‘the world’s greatest naval port’, it served as one of the main entry points for African and African-American sailors travelling to Britain. When they arrived among the dirt, noise and drunkenness of the industrialising port city, some of these individuals took it upon themselves to save the souls of Portsmouth’s ‘poor sinners’.
What did these pioneering figures make of Pompey, and how were they treated by the locals when they arrived? What exactly did they preach here? And how did they carve out a life for themselves during an age of slavery? In celebration of black history month, this paper explores the experiences of three key black preachers in Georgian Portsmouth.
About the speaker:
Ryan Hanley is Salvesen Junior Fellow in History at New College Oxford. He is the author of several articles on black intellectuals in eighteenth-century Britain, and is co-editor, with Katie Donington and Jessica Moody, of Britain’s History and Memory of Transatlantic Slavery (Liverpool UP, 2016). Ryan is currently working on a monograph on black writing in Britain between 1770 and 1830.
The Port Towns and Urban Cultures group is dedicated to furthering our understanding of the social and cultural impact of life in port towns from the eighteenth century to the modern period. Find out more.