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Queen’s to host lecture on acclaimed book ‘Black Spartacus: The Epic Life of Toussaint Louverture'

The Senator George J. Mitchell Institute for Global Peace, Security, and Justice at Queen's University will host a guest lecture on ‘Black Spartacus: The Epic Life of Toussaint Louverture’.


The lecture will be delivered by author and renowned Oxford academic, Dr Sudhir Hazareesingh.

The lecture will be held virtually on Tuesday 23 November and will be chaired by Professor Richard English, Director of the Senator George J. Mitchell Institute for Global Peace, Security, and Justice at Queen’s.

The lecture will explore the life of Toussaint Louverture, a former slave who became a charismatic leader resulting in the most successful revolt of enslaved people in modern history.

In this event, Dr Sudhir Hazareesingh will shed light on an epic yet complex and controversial life story that cuts across slavery, racial hierarchies, imperialism, and the Enlightenment. He will also discuss the impact, enduring legacy, and contemporary relevance of “the first black superhero of the modern age”.

Dr Sudhir Hazareesingh is a Fellow of the British Academy and has been a Fellow and Tutor in Politics at Balliol College, Oxford, since 1990. He has written extensively about French intellectual and cultural history; among his books are The Legend of Napoleon, In the Shadow of the General and How the French Think. His latest publication, Black Spartacus: The Epic Life of Toussaint Louverture won the 2021 Wolfson History Prize, with the judges describing it as an ‘erudite and elegant biography of a courageous leader which tells a gripping story with a message that resonates strongly in our own time’.

Speaking ahead of the event, Mitchell Institute Director Professor English said: “The Institute is honoured to be hosting this Lecture by Dr Hazareesingh, one of the world’s most distinguished scholars. Engaging with brilliant academics as they discuss their original research on major subjects is one of the Mitchell Institute’s central roles. This Lecture provides a wonderful opportunity for students, staff and the wider public to do just that, and we look forward to a wonderful event.”

The lecture will take place online on Tuesday 23 November from 17.00-18.30. For more information and to register for the event, please visit Eventbrite.

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Photo: Professor Richard English

Professor Richard English

School of History, Anthropology, Philosophy and Politics (HAPP), The Senator George J Mitchell Institute for Global Peace, Security and Justice