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The novel The Infamous Rosalie transports us back to Saint-Domingue—before it became Haiti—and sheds much-needed light on the legitimacy of the nation’s historical record by giving voice to the types of individuals, experiences, and perspectives that are sorely missing from it—the resilient women of Saint-Domingue, in particular.

Join Ima Hicks, Assistant Professor of Languages and Literature at Virginia Union University, for “Rage, Resistance & Response in The Infamous Rosalie,” a talk highlighting the research she conducted on the novel as a Virginia Humanities HBCU Scholars Fellow.

The title of her lecture references how Haitian anthropologist Michel-Rolph Trouillot created an equivalent of the “marron inconnu” (the unknown runaway slave) to symbolize the enslaved women who fought against slavery and colonial brutality in the French settlement of Saint-Domingue that sheds light on the invisible women of Haitian history; and it stresses the urgency of recovering these feminine historicities to restore the overall humanity of Haiti’s past through creative writing against oblivion.

This event is free, but registration is required. The Virginia HBCU Scholars Fellowship is made possible in part by a grant from the Dominion Energy Charitable Foundation.

Black History Museum and Cultural Center of Virginia

Hosted by Events on Leigh at the Black History Museum and Cultural Center of Virginia.


About the Speaker

Ima Hicks. Photo by Pat Jarrett/Virginia Humanities

Ima Hicks is an Assistant Professor of Languages and Literature at Virginia Union University. She teaches French and World Literature. She holds a B.A. from Oberlin College and an M.A. from Georgetown University. Her primary areas of interest are the intersection of race, gender, and justice in Francophone literature. Her work for the Virginia Humanities HBCU Scholars Fellowship is inspired by a novel by the Haitian writer Évelyne Trouillot’s tale of an African midwife in pre-revolutionary Haiti who kept a cord of some seventy knots, each one marking a child she had killed at birth.

Vanessa Adkins, right, is apprenticing under her cousin Jessica Canaday Stewart learning the finer points of traditional Chickahominy dancing. Photos taken at the Fall Festival and Pow Wow in Charles City on Saturday, Sept. 22, 2012.

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