• Leslie Alexander, Professor, History
  • Fear of a Black Republic: The History of US Foreign Policy Towards Haiti
  • Leslie Alexander, Professor, History
  • Event Date: 2023-04-06 12:00
  • Scarlet Speakers from the Heart of New Brunswick

Scarlet Speakers from the Heart of New Brunswick:  

Fear of a Black Republic: The History of US Foreign Policy Towards Haiti

Leslie Alexander, Professor, History

Please join us virtually on April 6, 2023, 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm. 

Leslie M. Alexander is the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Professor of History at Rutgers University and is a Fellow at the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy at Harvard University. A specialist in early African American and African Diaspora history, she is the author of African or American?: Black Identity and Political Activism in New York City, 1784-1861 and Fear of a Black Republic: Haiti and the Birth of Black Internationalism in the United States. She is also the co-editor of three additional volumes, including Ideas in Unexpected Places: Reimagining the Boundaries of Black Intellectual History. Her current project, “How We Got Here: Slavery and the Making of the Modern Police State,” examines how surveillance of free and enslaved Black communities in the colonial and antebellum eras laid the foundation for modern-day policing. A portion of that research appears in The 1619 Project: A New Origin Story.

A recipient of several prestigious fellowships, including the Ford Foundation Senior Fellowship, Alexander is the immediate Past President of the Association for the Study of the Worldwide African Diaspora (ASWAD), and is an Executive Council member of the National Council for Black Studies (NCBS). She also serves on the Advisory Councils for the Journal of African American History, Black Perspectives, and The Black Scholar. Most recently, she was elected to the Montpelier Foundation Board, which seeks to create an inclusive history of President James Madison’s former plantation. During her career, she has won several significant awards, including the coveted University Alumni Award for Distinguished Teaching at The Ohio State University.


Haiti’s political and economic challenges have received much attention in the U.S. media in recent years, but have you ever wondered why and how Haiti became the “poorest country in the western hemisphere?” It was not an accident of history, or a failure of leadership; it was by design. In this presentation, we’ll explore the long history of U.S. foreign policy towards Haiti to understand how the U.S. and other western European nations have used their economic and diplomatic strength for the past 200 years to isolate and impoverish the island nation often referred to as “The Black Republic.”


Event Recording:

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