Eine Wissenschaftlerin und ein Wissenschaftler arbeiten hinter einer Glasfassade und mischen Chemikalien mit Großgeräten.

News from the BCDSS

What's the latest news? View all BCDSS news announcements here. 

World Day Against Child Labour

June 12 marks the 'World Day Against Child Labor'. It aims to catalyze the growing global effort to eliminate child labor.

Roundtable Discussion: “The Visual Archives of Slavery: Legacies, Practices and Debates”

Researchers at the BCDSS work with and on visual material in their research on slaveries and dependencies. In this roundtable, a curator, an artist, and several researchers from the BCDSS will talk about visuality and dependency.

Identities in History - Guest Lecture by Prof. Kwame Anthony Appiah

We are pleased to announce that the renowned philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah will give a guest lecture at the BCDSS on 27 June 2024 titled "Identities in History." Appiah's lecture will be based on his latest book The Lies That Bind: Rethinking Identity (2018).

Call for Papers

Recent cataclysms in Eastern Europe prove glaringly just how important it is to continuously discuss and analyze asymmetrical dependencies in premodern inner Eurasian connecting spaces north and east of the great mountain ranges (e.g., Carpathians, Caucasus, Pamir, Tien Shan, Altai, etc.), now in large parts claimed by Russia.

The conference reaches beyond what is now Ukraine, Belarus, and Russia, encouraging scientific debates across regional and temporal disciplinary boundaries with area studies globally within the framework of the histories of entanglements and memory

Juneteenth Lecture by Charmaine A. Nelson

The scholarship on transatlantic slavery has long benefited from the often-exhaustive data published in the fugitive slave archive. Ubiquitous throughout the transatlantic world, fugitive slave advertisements were commonly placed by enslavers seeking to recapture enslaved people who resisted through flight. Such notices commonly provided specific, invasive detail about an enslaved person’s body, dress, skills, languages, and even gestures and mannerisms. Although enslaved females standardly comprised a smaller percentage of runaways, nevertheless, the fugitive notices that do exist for female freedom seekers shed light on their lives and experiences. Through an examination of the fugitive slave archive and other sources, this lecture seeks to fill some of the scholarly gaps on the experiences of enslaved females of African descent in Canada. More specifically, it will offer some distinctions between the lives and experiences of enslaved females in slave minority (temperate) and slave majority (tropical) sites in the British transatlantic world.

New BCDSS Discussion Paper Out Now!

The third BCDSS Discussion Paper on "Asymmetrical Dependencies and Intersectionality" has just been published. 

The Discussion Papers are dedicated to discussing the theoretical side of "strong asymmetrical dependency." They serve as impulses for researchers in and beyond the BCDSS who intend to work with the new key concept of strong asymmetrical dependency.


Workshop: Why Words Matter in Academia: Challenges and obstacles, policies and solutions

BCDSS' Translator & Academic Editor Imogen Herrad and Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Coordinator Dima Al Munajed will host this workshop for the University of Bonn's Diversity Days 2024.

New Book of DSS Series Published by De Gruyter

Narratives of Dependency: Textual Representations of Slavery, Captivity, and Other Forms of Strong Asymmetrical Dependencies

Edited by Prof. Dr. Elke Brüggen and Prof. Dr. Marion Gymnich. This book is part of the book series Dependency & Slavery Studies


Dies Academicus: Case Studies in the History of Slavery and Abolition

With Sara Eriksson, Sarah Zimmerman, and Natalie Joy, three of this year's BCDSS Fellows will present their personal research projects at the Dies Academicus on 15 May 2024. 

"Journal of Global Slavery" Special Issue: Beyond Slavery and Freedom

The newest issue of the Journal of Global Slavery includes the Special Issue “Beyond Slavery and Freedom?”, edited by BCDSS members Pia Wiegmink and Jutta Wimmler. The Special Issue demonstrates the variety of research done at the cluster. The Introduction is available as open access.

"Migration, Slavery and Commodification", Michael Zeuske's contribution to The Oxford Handbook of Commodity History

Congratulations to Michael Zeuske, Principal Investigator at the BCDSS, who authored the chapter "Migration, Slavery and Commodification" in The Oxford Handbook of Commodity History!

Stellenangebot / Job Offer: SHK/WHF

Im Rahmen des Projekts "Race and Freedom: Africans in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth on the Eve of Modernity", das seit Januar 2024 durch die DFG gefördert und am Bonn Center for Dependency and Slavery Studies (BCDSS) ansässig ist, suchen wir zum nächstmöglichen Zeitpunkt eine studentische (SHK) oder wissenschaftliche (WHF) Hilfskraft (m/w/d) für 20 Std im Monat.

As part of the project "Race and Freedom: Africans in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth on the Eve of Modernity", funded by the DFG since January 2024 and based at the Bonn Center for Dependency and Slavery Studies (BCDSS), we are looking for a student assistant (SHK, in the BA programme) or research assistant (WHF, in the MA programme) (m/f/d) for 20 hours per month as soon as possible.

Sneak Preview: Screening & Discussion of five Festival Films

Continuing our commitment to thought-provoking cinema and dialogue, we kick off our 2024 series with an exclusive preview of the Afrika Film Festival Köln, due this September. We are lucky to be able to feature a Screening & Discussion of five Festival films:

LIONS by Beru Tessema (2022)

OUSMANE  by Jorge Camarotti (2021)


FLOWERS by Dumas Haddad (2022)

SÈT LAM  by Vincent Fontano (2023)

Join us for our post-screening talk and get-together with BCDSS members:
Malik Ade, Mary Aderonke Afolabi-Adeolu and Luvena Kopp (moderation)

International Workshop on "Contemporary Slavery and Asymmetrical Dependency in Nigeria"

Together with Prof. Dr. Chioma Daisy Onyige and our partner institution from the University of Port Harcourt, Nigeria, we host an international workshop on "Contemporary Slavery and Asymmetrical Dependency in Nigeria."

New Publication by Christian Laes

Former BCDSS Fellow Prof. Dr. Christian Laes, University of Manchester, has published a new book on Disability and Healing in Greek and Roman Myth.

Book Discussion "Slavery and Dependency: Comparative Approaches in Global History."

A roundtable with historians from France, Britain, Germany and the US.

Stellenangebot / Job Offer: Research Associate (65%)

Am Lehrstuhl von Prof. Dr. Julia Hillner ist zum 1. Oktober 2024 die Stelle eines*r Wissenschaftliche*n Mitarbeiter*in (65%) zu besetzen. Die Stelle ist vom 1. Oktober 2024 bis zum 30. September 2028 befristet ausgeschrieben. Nach einem Jahr wird eine Zwischenevaluation durchgeführt. Bis zum 31. Januar 2026 ist die Stelle am Bonn Center for Dependency and Slavery Studies (BCDSS) angesiedelt, ab dem 1. Februar 2026 am Institut für  Geschichtswissenschaften/Abteilung Alte Geschichte.

The Chair of Prof. Dr. Julia Hillner invites applications for the position of a Research Associate (65%). The position is for a fixed-term period from October 1, 2024 to September 30, 2028. An interim evaluation will be carried out after one year. Until January 31, 2026, the position is located at the Bonn Center for Dependency and Slavery Studies (BCDSS), from February 1, 2026 at the Institute of Historical Sciences / Department of Ancient History.

Stellenangebot / Job Offer: SHK/WHF

Für die Zusammenarbeit mit dem Internationaal Instituut voor Sociale Geschiedenis (IISG) suchen wir zum nächstmöglichen Zeitpunkt und für ca. 19 Stunden die Woche eine studentische (SHK, im BA Studium) oder wissenschaftliche Hilfskraft (WHF, im MA Studium) (m/w/d).

For our cooperation with the Internationaal Instituut voor Sociale Geschiedenis (IISG) we are looking for a student assistant (SHK, in the BA programme) or research assistant (WHF, in the MA programme) (m/f/d) for approx. 19 hours per week as soon as possible.

International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade

25 March marks the International Slavery and Transatlantic Slave Trade Remembrance Day.

Talking History: Ethnographic Interviews, Intersectional Identities, and Power Negotiations in Research Encounters

Sinah Kloß's latest contribution to "Un-Mapping the Global South" is out.

Joseph C. Miller Memorial Lectures - Spring 2024

We regularly invite renowned international scholars from across the world to present their ongoing research related to asymmetrical dependency and slavery. In return we offer the possibility to publish a revised version of their lectures as part of our Joseph C. Miller Memorial Lecture Publications.

See what's coming up between April and June 2024!

Call for Papers

The BCDSS is accepting papers for the two international conferences that will take place at the Departamento de Historia de la Universidad de La Habana on September 12–13 and Universidad de Cienfuegos on September 20-21, 2024.

SOCARE Keynote Steeve O. Buckridge

We're delighted that Professor Steeve Buckridge (Grand Valley State University, MI) will give the keynote lecture as part of the SOCARE EARLY-CAREER SYMPOSIUM 2024: (Im)materiality, new archives and the Caribbean 

Call for Applications

The Bonn Center for Dependency and Slavery Studies calls for applications for the Euthenia Fellowship Program.

Exhibition 'Counter Thoughts, Counter Images' by Cheryl McIntosh

Don't miss the upcoming exhibition Counter Thoughts, Counter Images by Cheryl McIntosh, a Jamaican-born artist living in Bonn! The exhibition is the result of the 'Active Remembrance Culture' project, which aims to highlight themes of colonialism, racism, resistance, and recognition, particularly in Bonn's history.

"Welten der Sklaverei" Book Launch at Staatsbibliothek Berlin

BCDSS Professor Claudia Jarzebowski and BCDSS Principal Investigator Michael Zeuske share some impressions from the event.

To mark International Women's Day 2024

The Screening & Discussion of the Documentary “Midwives” is part of a two-day event series marking International Women’s Day 2024.

"Without us, where would they go?"

"Midwives", the award-winning documentary by Myanmar film maker Snow Hnin Ei Hlaing is set in the aftermath of the 2017 violent ethnic conflicts between the (Buddhist) Myanmar military and the (Muslim) Rohingya minority in the Rakhine state of Western Myanmar. 

The story follows the fortunes of a Rakhine Buddhist Woman and founder of a rural antenatal clinic and her Muslim Rohingya apprentice. The film delivers a nuanced portrait in which the clinic acts as a microcosm of contemporary Myanmar. With an eye toward peace and reconciliation, the film reveals how categorical markers of social difference, including ethnicity, religion and gender, contribute to forming and perpetuating dependency relations. 

The discussion will explore these intersectional dependencies.

“Midwives”, Myanmar, Germany | 2022 | 89:00 min | Burmese with English subtitles | link to trailer

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