- Associate Professor (Ph.D., New York University, 2007)
- SBS S-319
- Research Interests
My new book is entitled, Mahogany: The Costs of Luxury in Early America (Harvard University Press, 2012). It examines the history of mahogany consumption in North America in the 18th and early 19th centuries and the resulting human and environmental impacts in the West Indies and Central America where it was harvested using enslaved African labor. The book is based on my dissertation which won the Society of American Historians' Nevins Prize for Best-Written Dissertation.
As an Atlantic historian, I am interested in the complex relationships (social, economic, and political) that developed among the Americas, Europe, Africa, and the Caribbean in the early modern period. Using a comparative perspective, I explore the history of colonialism, imperialism, slavery, issues of labor, race, and gender, and the rise of nationalism and revolutionary movements. My other interests include: environmental history, Early American social and cultural history, material culture, natural history and knowledge production, museum studies, and public history.
Before joining the History faculty at Stony Brook University, I worked as a museum curator, exhibition developer, and historical consultant at numerous historic sites and museums. Most recently, I served as historical advisor for the Emmy-nominated documentary about the New England slave trade, entitled “Traces of the Trade: A Story from the Deep North.”
Key Search Words: mahogany; slavery; history; environmental history; economic history; "Jennifer Anderson" "Jenny Anderson" "Jennifer L. Anderson"
- Scholarly Works
- Mahogany: The Costs of Luxury in Early America (Harvard University Press, 2012)http://www.hup.harvard.edu/catalog.php?isbn=9780674048713&content=reviews
“The Card Family and the Mahogany Trade: From New England to the Bay of Honduras,” New England and the Caribbean, ed. Peter Benes (Dublin Seminar for New England Folk Life, 2012), pp. 15-32.
“New England Merchants and the Circum-Caribbean Slave Trade,” in Paths of the Atlantic Slave Trade: Interactions, Identities, and Images, ed. Ana Lucia Araujo (Cambria Press, 2011), 21-48.
“Better Judges of the Situation: Environmental Realities & Problems of Imperial Authority in the Bay of Honduras,” Itinerario, special issue: “Geographies of Empire,” 30: 3 (2006), pp. 55-75.
“Nature's Currency: The Atlantic Mahogany Trade and the Commodification of Nature in the Eighteenth Century,” Early American Studies, 2:1 (Spring 2004), pp. 47-80. *Received 2004 prize for “Outstanding Journal Article in Early American Economic History,” Program in Early American Society and Economics.
“Bounding Oceans, Encompassing Forests: Mobility & Dislocation in the Atlantic Mahogany Trade,” Working Paper, Atlantic History Seminar, Harvard University, 2004.