Nathan Marvin is an assistant professor of history at the University of Arkansas, Little Rock, where he is also a Gender Studies affiliate faculty member. His work focuses on slavery and resistance in the French colonial world. His current book project examines the makings of racial categories on Mauritius and Réunion Island (17th-19th centuries). His second project explores the lived experiences of people enslaved on properties owned or managed by Catholic orders and congregations throughout the French empire. He teaches courses on historical methods, France, the Atlantic world, and the Haitian Revolution in Global Perspective. Students in his classes investigate how power shapes our past and present, excavating stories from history’s margins through a mix of original research and collaborative interpretation of primary sources. Nate lives and works in Little Rock, Arkansas. He is originally from coastal New Hampshire.
Créoles de l'île Bourbon : race et révolution dans les colonies françaises de l'océan Indien, 1767-1803
This project explores the makings of race in the French-colonial world from the vantage of Réunion Island. That whiteness appeared fungible there (applied to a population of diverse origins) has been taken as evidence that slavery and racial hierarchy were more “benign” in the Indian Ocean than in the Atlantic world, or else, that Réunion was an aberration. But the capacious definition of whiteness that emerged there made it no less violent. As thecase of Réunion suggests, that ability to adapt helps explain its global reach staying power throughout the French colonial world and beyond.