The Department of Anthropology is very pleased to announce that Professor Ethan Watrall is one of the Principal Investigators that has been awarded a major grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The project, entitled Enslaved: People of the Historical Slave Trade, is collaboration with MATRIX: The Center for Digital Humanities and Social Sciences (where Watrall serves as Associate Director) and the Department of History. The $1.47 million grant will fund the first 18-month phase of a multi-phase plan to build and launch an online platform that will link and provide access to millions of pieces of data about that transatlantic slave trade drawn from multiple universities, cultural heritage institutions, and scholarly projects. The platform will provide unprecedented search and data visualization tools for historians, historical anthropologists, and historical archaeologists interested in the transatlantic slave trade.
The platform will be completely open and free to use by scholars and members of the general public.
Dean Rehberger, (Director of MATRIX: The Center for Digital Humanities and Social Sciences; Interim Chair, Sociology ADA Liaison; Associate Professor, Department of History) will lead the project along with Walter Hawthorne (College of Social Science, Associate Dean; Professor, Department of History) and Ethan Watrall (Assistant Professor, Department of Anthropology).
Watrall is internationally recognized for his experience and expertise in the domain of digital heritage and archaeology. Most recently he was Director (with Professor Lynne Goldstein) of the National Endowment for the Humanities funded Institute for Digital Archaeology Method and Practice and Co-Director (with Professor Candace Keller from the Department of Art, Art History, and Design) of the National Endowment for the Humanities funded Digital Archive of Malian Photography. He is Currently Co-Director (with Professor Jon Frey from the Department of Art, Art History, and Design) of the National Endowment for the Humanities funded ARCS: Archaeological Resource Cataloging System. In addition, he directs the Cultural Heritage Informatics Graduate Fellowship Program and the Fieldschool in Digital Heritage (both of which live under the umbrella of the Department of Anthropology’s Cultural Heritage Informatics Initiative)
The full press release from Michigan State University can be found at http://msutoday.msu.edu/news/2018/msu-uses-15m-mellon-foundation-grant-to-build-massive-slave-trade-database/
Click here to read the Spring 2018 newsletter.