New website launched to celebrate Mary Prince, whose first-hand story revealed brutalities of slavery

A new website celebrating the incredible story of Mary Prince, the first black woman to have had her slave narrative published, is being launched in Wolverhampton.

University of Wolverhampton PhD researcher Ifemu Omari has created the website to help share Mary’s story.

It is being launched at the University’s Arena Theatre and is supported by the University of Wolverhampton Students’ Union as part of its series of Black History Year events.

Ifemu said: “I want to inform and inspire both the Windrush generation and younger, non-specialist audiences about Mary Prince, the only black woman from the West Indies to have had her slave narrative published.

“There is so much misinformation out there, I wanted to give people the truth about this incredible story. I also want it to be about looking at history in an active way, not just about soaking up history passively and I want it to be accessible.

“We need to look at it objectively and learn lessons from it.”

Ifemu, a University of Wolverhampton PhD researcher, who lives in the city, is launching her website after winning the President’s Prize given by the British Association for Romantic Studies (BARS). The event is also supported and  funded by the University’s  Centre for Transnational and Transcultural Research.

She said around 60 guests were expected at the launch event, on Monday, March 6, including Wolverhampton mayor Sandra Samuels.

The event will include a Caribbean buffet and a dance ensemble and will end with a roundtable panel of black female contributors, called WomanChat.

Students’ union CEO, Nirmla Devi, said: “We always mark Black History month, but we felt a month was nowhere near enough, so we have extended it into Black History Year.

“We have a whole host of events going on to celebrate and honour black history throughout 2023. We are immensely proud to be supporting Ifemu and her website launch and to help raise awareness of the amazing story of Mary Prince.”

Mary Prince was born ‘a slave’ in Bermuda in the late 1700s. She told her first-hand account of her experiences as a slave to Susanna Strickland and, with the support of abolitionist Thomas Pringle, it was published in 1831.

The website launch event is called Am I a Woman or a Slave? The Formidable Layers of Mary Prince and takes place at the Arena Theatre in Wulfruna Street, Wolverhampton, from 1.30pm to 4.30pm.

To find out more and to reserve a place go to

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/am-i-a-woman-or-a-slave-the-formidable-layers-of-mary-prince-tickets-533730451147?aff=ebdshpsearchautocomplete

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