Mapping Conflict during the Era of the Slave Trade: Metadata Schema for a Spatial Statistical Model and Digital Archive of Enforced Migrations in Pre-Colonial Africa Journal Article uri icon



  • Labelled a crime against humanity by the United Nations in 2011, the slave trade and its legacy of bondage unfortunately continue to shape modern society through racism, discrimination, and unconscious bias. For those who were silenced, and for their descendants, there is little reconciliation. Without knowing their individual stories – where they came from, where they were taken – this part of human history remains a generalized story of mass atrocity, lacking details about the experiences of enslaved human beings. While historians have amassed data for over 12.5 million people involved in the Atlantic slave trade between 1500 and 1867, we have not been able to piece together enforced population movements from specific African places inland to slave ships at the coast. By applying methods from GIScience and spatial statistics, it is possible to learn about global migrations resulting from slavery within pre-colonial Africa. By extracting spatial data from primary and secondary sources, it is possible to design a spatial data repository and digital archive of pre-colonial African places with instances of conflict to operate on a temporal scale with Geographic Information Systems (GIS).

publication date

  • January 1, 2022

has restriction

  • bronze

Date in CU Experts

  • January 24, 2023 1:12 AM

Full Author List

  • Lovejoy HB

author count

  • 1

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