In conjunction with the exhibition, “A True Friend of the Cause”: Lafayette and the Antislavery Movement, the Grolier Club and Lafayette College are pleased to offer a roundtable discussion on the role of the Marquis de Lafayette as an international antislavery advocate and his contributions to the abolitionist movement on three continents. A number of the exhibition’s themes will be explored, including the personal and intellectual origins of Lafayette’s interest in the welfare of the enslaved during and immediately following the American Revolution; his involvement in transatlantic antislavery organizations; his experiment in gradual emancipation in French Guiana; and his enduring influence on American abolitionists, both black and white.
The discussion will be moderated by the exhibition’s curators:
Olga Anna Duhl, Oliver Edwin Williams Professor of Languages, Lafayette College and Grolier Club member
Diane Windham Shaw, Director of Special Collections and College Archivist, Lafayette College
Speakers will include:
Laura Auricchio, professor of Art History at Parsons School of Design, a college within The New School. Her writings on Lafayette include The Marquis: Lafayette Reconsidered (2014), winner of the 2015 American Library in Paris Book Award, and “Transplanting Liberty: Lafayette’s American Garden,” in Dan O’Brien, ed., Gardening—Philosophy for Everyone: Cultivating Wisdom (2010). She has also written extensively on French women artists of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries with publications including Adélaïde Labille-Guiard: Artist in the Age of Revolution for the J. Paul Getty Museum (2009).
François Furstenberg, professor of History at Johns Hopkins University. He is the author of In the Name of the Father: Washington’s Legacy, Slavery, and the Making of a Nation (2006) and When the United States Spoke French: Five Refugees who Shaped a Nation (2014). His scholarship on the connections between the U.S. and the French Atlantic world in the 18th-century also includes his prize-winning 2011 article in the William and Mary Quarterly, “Atlantic Slavery, Atlantic Freedom: George Washington’s Library, Slavery, and Trans-Atlantic Abolitionist Networks,” in which Lafayette figures prominently.
John Stauffer, professor of English, American Studies, and African American Studies at Harvard University. He is the author and editor of numerous books on slavery and abolition, including Picturing Frederick Douglass: An Illustrated History of the Nineteenth Century’s Most Photographed American (2015) and Giants: The Parallel Lives of Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln (2008). He has appeared in and served as an advisor to the PBS documentaries, The Abolitionists and The African American Experience: Many Rivers to Cross. In addition to antislavery, his scholarly interests include the Civil War era, social protest movements, and photography.
January 24, 2017, 2:00-3:30 p.m. with a reception to follow
The Grolier Club, 47 E. 60th Street, New York City
To Register, please email Maev Brennan at firstname.lastname@example.org
Image: Jean-Baptiste Le Paon, Lafayette at Yorktown, oil on canvas, 1782. Lafayette College Art Collection