Last October, African history professor, Dr. Daniel Domingues, attended the Second International Conference of the Mozambique History Workshop at Maputo, capital of Mozambique, where he presented a paper on his latest project, “Visualizing Abolition: A Digital History of the Suppression of the African Slave Trade.” The project maps the suppression of the traffic by tracing nearly 31,000 records of letters exchanged between the Foreign Office and British commissioners, ministers, naval officers, and representatives of foreign governments located around the world over the course of the nineteenth century. He developed the project originally at his previous appointment at the University of Missouri, but is now working to bring it over to Rice so our students can take it to new heights.
During the occasion, Dr. Domingues visited the Center of African Studies of Eduardo Mondlane University, visited the Historical Archive of Mozambique, and conducted a brief research on the inland origins of slaves transported from Mozambique in the nineteenth century. The visit to the archive proved promising, as he identified important sources for the history of slavery and the slave trade from Mozambique. The research, although ongoing, has also shown some early positive results. He was able to not only mobilize a number of collaborators to complete the work, but also helped reconnecting descendants of Makhuwa, one of the peoples forced into the slave trade from Mozambique, in the diaspora with descendants of Makhuwa in the homeland.
Finally, in view of his several activities, two radio stations invited Dr. Domingues to talk about his work: 97.1 FM Rádio Politécnica and 89.5 FM Rádio Índico. As in many other African countries, radio is still the principal means of conveying important information to the public in Mozambique. Rádio Índico, in fact, broadcasts its programs to the national capital and each provincial capital of the country simultaneously. This was probably the first time that Rice’s name reached this part of the African continent and, as far as Dr. Domingues could assure us, it was a sweet and friendly exchange.
Should you be interested in learning more about Dr. Domingues’s project, please visit visualizingabolition.org. Updates about it are available on its Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/Visualizing-Abolition-626732180837317/ .