British Association for American Studies


Summer Scholars: Joseph Zobel/Loyalist Lawyers (British Library)

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Summer Scholars: Joseph Zobel/Loyalist Lawyers (British Library)

July 17, 2015 @ 12:30 pm - 2:00 pm

Summer Scholars Friday 17 July

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  • Joseph Zobel, French Caribbean author

Louise Hardwick discusses Joseph Zobel’s work and its contribution to understandings of Négritude, colonialism and post-slavery Martinique.

  • Loyalist Lawyers in Exile

Sally Hadden (Eccles Centre Visiting Fellow) explores what life was like for loyalist lawyers in exile from Revolutionary America once they arrived in England as refugees.


‘Joseph Zobel, French Caribbean author’

Louise Hardwick, University of Birmingham

Louise Hardwick discusses her Arts and Humanities Research Council Fellowship working on the first study of Martinican author Joseph Zobel. Famous for his childhood memoir La Rue Cases-Nègres (1950) which is studied throughout the world and was adapted into the filmBlack Shack Alley by Euzhan Palcy in 1983, Zobel is a canonical Caribbean author. Yet in 2015, the centenary of his birth, much of his work still remains unknown. Louise’s research is uncovering Zobel’s neglected wider body of work and demonstrating how it makes an important contribution to our understanding of Négritude, colonialism and post-slavery Martinique. Working in partnership with schools, libraries and museums in Martinique, and with the British Library, Louise aims to change current Francophone and Anglophone perceptions of this important author (project blog: www.josephzobel.wordpress.com).

Louise Hardwick is Senior Lecturer in French at the University of Birmingham. She has published widely in English and in French on authors from Martinique, Guadeloupe and Haiti, including the Haitian diaspora in Canada. Her book Childhood, Autobiography and the Francophone Caribbean (Liverpool University Press, 2013) examines how leading Francophone Caribbean authors have established a tradition of postcolonial childhood narratives which mobilize childhood in as much a politically as an aesthetically subversive manner. Her recent work on postcolonial biopolitics (2012-2014) was funded through an EU/FP7 Marie Curie award, and her current project on Joseph Zobel is funded by an AHRC Early Career Leadership Fellowship (2014-2016).

‘Loyalist Lawyers in Exile’

Sally Hadden, Western Michigan University (Eccles Centre Visiting Fellow)

Loyalist exiles from Revolutionary America as a group have received regular and even recent scholarly attention, but the tendency (to date) has been to focus upon the movement of families or the more outspoken individuals who were part of the emigration from America to other parts of the British Empire. Only a few paragraphs in these larger works have been devoted to loyalists who had been lawyers in America; in those cases, the focus was not upon their legal careers, but upon their political viewpoints, as literate spokesmen for all refugees, or the demands that they made for Parliamentary compensation for posts and salaries lost. Men such as Robert Auchmuty, Jonathan Sewall, or Joseph Galloway and Thomas Hutchinson, however, did more than vent their spleens about the horrible war and the ingratitude of Parliament toward the loyalists. A group of loyalist lawyers lived in a string of London houses upon Brompton Row in the 1770s and early 80s, and later several of them relocated to Bristol and other towns outside of London—again, continuing to live in clusters. Their patterns of group sociability, established in young adulthood in America, continued while living in England. My intention is to explore records held by the British Library that pertain to these men in the 1770s and 80s, tracking their time as refugees and the options they pondered as men who, in some cases, lost their profession.

Sally Hadden received her doctorate and law degrees from Harvard University. Her first book,Slave Patrols: Law and Violence in Virginia and the Carolinas, appeared in 2001. Three books that she co-wrote or co-edited appeared in 2013 on a variety of topics in legal history. Her BAAS-Eccles Centre project is connected to the history of lawyers in eighteenth-century America that she is completing, and she is also co-writing a history of the early U.S. Supreme Court. Dr. Hadden is a member of the History department at Western Michigan University.


July 17, 2015
12:30 pm - 2:00 pm
Event Category:


Eccles Centre for American Studies
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ritish Library Conference Centre
Bronte Room, 96 Euston Road
London, NW1 2DB United Kingdom
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