• Digital Decolonization: Exhibit Building in the Classroom – The Early Caribbean Digital Archive
    Elizabeth Maddock Dillon (Northeastern University), Alanna Prince (Northeastern University)

This hands-on workshop will begin with a brief introduction to the Early Caribbean Digital Archive (ECDA)—an open-access, free, interactive scholarly database of pre-twentieth century Caribbean novels, travel narratives, maps, and images housed at Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts that aims to use digital remediation to decolonize the archive: ecda.northeastern.edu. This workshop will focus on how to use the ECDA in the classroom to build student-designed exhibits made up of archival texts, images, and scholarly criticism on topics related to early Caribbean culture, decolonizing structures of knowledge, and the historical roots of emancipatory thought in the Caribbean.

In curating exhibits, students guide their audience through a visual narrative, in which each item advances a story or argument: student (or faculty) curation enables a “remix” of the archive such that the colonial modes of knowledge that inform many early texts can be placed in question and/or disrupted by competing anti-colonial narratives. This workshop will introduce participants to several assignments and in-class activities using the ECDA’s archive. In the second half of the workshop, participants and ECDA team members will break into discussion groups to share and workshop assignments. Workshop participants will leave with a toolkit of assignments and the invitation to continue working with ECDA team as Teaching Partners.

The ECDA is eager to partner with scholars in the Caribbean, and we hope this workshop will enable the development of on-going partnerships with scholars and teachers from a range of institutions, especially those based in the Caribbean.