I study marginalized communities and ideas of difference in early modern Spain. More specifically, in my dissertation I examine the history of the Black diaspora in sixteenth-century Valencia, Spain. Using archival records, I shed light on quotidian elements of free and enslaved Black Valencians’ lives and experiences. In doing so, I show that early modern Valencia was home to a number of distinct Black communities and that Black Valencians adopted a number of strategies to build families, livelihoods, and communities and to navigate an often hostile social and legal landscape.
Black Communities in Sixteenth-Century Valencia