Teacher Fellowship Programme: Britain and Transatlantic Slavery

Teacher Fellowship Programme 2019

Last updated: 23rd July 2019

Transatlantic slavery remains one of the most widely taught topics in secondary schools' history curricula and poses challenges of principle and practice that require considerable reflection and critical rigour. This year’s second Teacher Fellowship Programme will explore the teaching of Britain's complex entanglement in transatlantic slavery and abolition, and of the legacies of that entanglement.

The programme draws on a wealth of scholarship in the field, subject-pedagogical conceptual work by Justice to History, and new empirical research from the Legacies of British Slave-ownership project at University College London, to frame a set of principles to govern the teaching of Britain and to develop new approaches and resources for use in the classroom.

Working principles for the teaching of Britain and transatlantic slavery

Britain and transatlantic slavery is a potentially challenging and sensitive aspect of history, involving major issues of social justice and ethical dimensions of the past. A set of 14 Working Principles, available to download below, has been prepared to guide this programme of study and to form the basis of future work nationally. The course leaders would like the programme to be the opportunity for further thinking and considered application of these principles. By the end of the programme, they hope to present the revised set for wider use.

About the course

Participants are working with Dr Nick Draper from UCL and Dr Kate Donington from London South Bank University, who have both worked with the Legacies of British Slave-ownership project at UCL, and Abdul Mohamud and Dr Robin Whitburn from Justice to History, who are history educators and Fellows of the HA, to address two fundamental questions:

What challenges are involved in developing historical thinking and learning in secondary classrooms that consider transatlantic slavery from perspectives of race, capitalism, culture and justice?

How can we help students and teachers confront issues of exploitation, racism, terror, resistance and reform in both historical and contemporary contexts?

Fellows are exploring a range of sources and interpretations that can be used to develop meaningful and engaging approaches to teaching about the circumstances, experiences, and consequences of African enslavement across the Atlantic.

This funded programme began in April 2019 with a residential course hosted at the Convent of Jesus and Mary Language College in London and is in the middle of an eight-week online course. You can follow updates from the participants using the hashtag  on Twitter.