Blackness, Immobility, & Visibility in Europe (1600-1800) – A Collaborative Timeline

This crowdsourced timeline chronicles the representation and regulation of black bodies in Europe, circa 1600-1800. As a tool for research and teaching, it allows users to cross-reference artworks and historical events in spatial and visual relation to one another. For an introduction to the timeline, the collaborative project behind it, and the critical terrain around it, see Blackness, Immobility, & Visibility in Europe: A Digital Collaboration, by Zirwat Chowdhury.

To navigate the timeline, you can either click on the arrows to move forward or back one-by-one, or drag the time bar along and click on individual entries to move through decades and centuries more quickly. Given the subject matter of this timeline, some of the images may be disturbing to some viewers.


This timeline is the product of an international collaboration that took place between June and September 2020. The editors of Journal18 are grateful for the generosity with which our numerous contributors, listed below, shared their knowledge and time to provide and edit content. We would also like to thank Louis Susunaga (Class of 2021, UCLA), who translated the shared Google Document into a digital database and conducted bibliographic research. The timeline itself was created by Hannah Williams using TimelineJS, an open-source tool created by Northwestern University Knight Lab.

Funding to support this project was generously provided by the UCLA Dean of Humanities Discretionary Fund and the UCLA Center for 17th- and 18th-Century Studies.

As with the collaborative input that made this timeline possible in the first place, we welcome the feedback of our readers should you note any errors or wish to propose any modifications.

Timeline Contributors

Carrie Anderson (Middlebury College, Middlebury, VT); Diego Atehortúa (University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK); Anaïs Auger-Mathurin (Université de Montréal, Montreal, Canada); Horace D. Ballard (Williams College, Williamstown, MA); Florence Blackwell (University of Colorado, Denver, CO); Kelsey Brosnan (Christie’s); Ashley Bruckbauer (Independent Scholar); Emily Casey (St. Mary’s College of Maryland, St. Mary’s, MD); Esther Chadwick (Courtauld Institute of Art, London, UK); Kee Il Choi Jr. (Leiden University Centre for the Arts in Society, Leiden, Netherlands); Zirwat Chowdhury (University of California, Los Angeles, CA); Roberto Contini (Gemäldegalerie, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin—Preußischer Kulturbesitz, Berlin, Germany); Cecilio M. Cooper (Tulane University, New Orleans, LA); Sylvain Cordier (Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond, VA); Anne-Valérie Dulac (Sorbonne Université, Paris, France); Danielle Ezor (Southern Methodist University, Dallas, TX); Meredith Gamer (Columbia University, New York, NY); Jennifer Germann (Ithaca College, Ithaca, NY); Matthew Gin (Harvard University, Cambridge, MA); Maura Gleeson (Independent Scholar); Kate Grandjouan (Northeastern/New College of the Humanities, London, UK); Philippe Halbert (Yale University, New Haven, CT); Lydia Hamlett (University of Cambridge); David Hansen (Australian National University, Canberra, Australia); Yuriko Jackall (The Wallace Collection, London, UK); Adam Jasienski (Southern Methodist University); Denise M. Johnson (Chapman University, Orange, CA); Marsely Kehoe (Hope College, Holland, MI); Daniëlle Kisluk-Grosheide (The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY); Katja Kleinert (Gemäldegalerie, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin—Preußischer Kulturbesitz); Jo Langston (Freelance Portrait Miniatures Consultant, Christie’s); Susan Libby (Rollins College, Winter Park, FL); Borja Franco Llopis (UNED, Madrid, Spain); Maria de Lourdes Ghidoli (Universidad de Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires, Argentina); Meredith Martin (NYU, New York, NY); Kathryn Milligan (University College Dublin, Dubin, Ireland); Naeem Mohaiemen (Columbia University); Sarah Murden (All Things Georgian); Rathika Muthukumaran (Jesus College, University of Oxford, UK); Elyse Nelson (The Metropolitan Museum of Art); Jason Nguyen (University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada); Konrad Niemira (University of Warsaw, Warsaw, Poland); Liza Oliver (Wellesley College, Wellesley, MA); Sophie Pitman (Aalto University, Helsinki, Finland); David Pullins (The Metropolitan Museum of Art); Bart Pushaw (University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark); Rose Rabiatou Marie Camara (Courtauld Institute of Art); Kim Rhodes (Drew University, Madison, NJ); Stéphane Roy (Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada); Maria Ruvoldt (Fordham University, New York, NY); Sarah Salomon (Gemäldegalerie, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin—Preußischer Kulturbesitz); Margaret Samu (Parsons School of Design, New York, NY); Rebecca Selch (Harvard University); Stacey Sloboda (University of Massachusetts, Boston, MA); Kristel Smentek (MIT, Cambridge, MA); Paris Spies-Gans (Harvard Society of Fellows, Cambridge, MA); Louis Susunaga (UCLA); Gillian Weiss (Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH); Robert Wellington (Australian National University); Aaron Wile (National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC); Hannah Williams (QMUL, London, UK); Emine Yüksel (IGU, Istanbul, Turkey).

Cite this note as:  “Blackness, Immobility & Visibility in Europe (1600-1800) – A Collaborative Timeline,” Journal18 (September 2020),

Licence: CC BY-NC

Journal18  is published under a Creative Commons CC BY-NC International 4.0 license. Use of any content published in Journal18 must be for non-commercial purposes and appropriate credit must be given to the author of the content. Details for appropriate citation appear above.