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Monthly Digest: September 2022

Bram Hubbell
Bram Hubbell
4 min read
Monthly Digest: September 2022

On the last day of each month, I will send out a post that includes some brief reflections on the past month, a recap of all the posts published during the previous month, and my monthly travel tale.

My crazy dream has become reality

Liberating Narratives began as a blog many years ago, and I always wanted to write more. Like most teachers, I felt overwhelmed with school responsibilities. Besides preparing for classes, there were always too many assignments to grade, meetings to attend, reports to write, and emails to respond to. I still feel a bit overwhelmed with little tasks (I never imagined I would have a Google document called “Social Media Plan”!), but I have been able to set aside time every day to read excellent books and articles and to write about teaching world history. As I write this reflection, I just received the email notification that I got my 100th subscriber! It’s been exactly two weeks since I published my first post, so I feel great.

My goal is to keep writing and refining how I tell folks about my work. I’m revising my social media plan and want to experiment with different strategies. Please let me know if you like the posts I’m publishing on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. I also would love feedback on the posts themselves. I’m trying to balance background information, primary source excerpts, visual images, and maps. I also don’t want the posts to get too long, but that challenge has been more complicated than I imagined. I wanted to publish even more with these last two posts! If you have any ideas or recommendations for future posts, please get in touch with me.

If you’ve enjoyed what I’ve been publishing, please share it with your colleagues and friends. Many thanks!


What I’ve Published

11 September - A New Narrative for Liberating Narratives - a public post announcing the transition from blog to subscription newsletter.

15 September - “If there were no buyers there would be no sellers”: Teaching the Transatlantic Slave System, c.1450 - c.1850 - the first monthly public post outlining general approaches to how we can teach the transatlantic slave system.

16 September - From Dublin to Shandong: Slavery and Slaving in Afroeurasia before 1400 C.E. - the first weekly post only for paid subscribers. This post focused on the “medieval” context of slavery and the slave trade in Afroeurasia that helps students understand how unique the transatlantic slave system was.

23 September - “We Cannot Reckon How Great the Damage Is”: Origins of the Transatlantic Slave System, c.1450 - c.1650 - a weekly post only for paid subscribers. This post focused on the early phase of the transatlantic slave system. During this period, the Portuguese dominated the system. There are also some global connections in this post.

23 September - Analyzing the Letters of King Afonso I of Kongo - the first lesson only for paid subscribers. I’ve included some more extended excerpts from the letters discussed in the weekly post and some guiding questions that can be used with students.

30 September - “Suffering the Most Excruciating Torments”: The Height of the Transatlantic Slave System, 1650-1850 - a weekly post only for paid subscribers. This post focused on the second half of the transatlantic slave system. During this period, the British dominated the system. The focus is on using primary sources, especially those written by Africans, to understand the experience of the enslaved and the consequences of the transatlantic slave system.

30 September - Understanding the Middle Passage with Primary Sources - a lessen only for paid subscribers. This lesson uses five short excerpts describing the Middle Passage. Students use hexagonal thinking to analyze the sources.