David Anderson on "Diverse Voices from Our Maritime Past"

David Anderson on "Diverse Voices from Our Maritime Past"

Dr. David Anderson

David Anderson has published a co-authored article in Oceanus titled Diverse Voices from Our Maritime Past: Exploring the Historical Contributions from Mariners of Color. In their article, Dr. Anderson and Richard King explore the importance of historical archives that point to the lived experiences of Black and Indigenous whalers and mariners.

"Environmental historians, marine ecologists, and other scholars ask questions that are quantitative—how much sea grass here in the 1700s; how many bowheads there in the 1900s. And, they pose qualitative questions about perceptions of marine life—how did mariners respond to seeing a shark here in the 1600s; how did local fishermen value shearwaters there in the 1800s? ... The answers to these questions require the study of historical marine observations by a diverse range of observers, including Indigenous peoples and marginalized mariners, fishermen, and naturalists. Including these records in undergraduate and graduate coursework also decolonizes syllabi, clarifying that it has not only been white Western men who have built our global knowledge of ocean life."

Oceanus is a journal of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, the world's leading, independent non-profit organization dedicated to ocean research, exploration, and education. Click here to read the full article.

David Anderson is an Associate Professor of English at UofL. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania, and has published on American and African American poetry. He is interested in neglected African American poetry of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, the Harlem Renaissance, environmentalism and African American literature, and poetic forms and traditions.