Rebecca Shumway

  • Associate Professor, History
  • Director of Graduate Studies, History
  • Affiliated Professor, African and African Diaspora Studies (AADS)


  • PhD, History, Emory University, 2004
  • MA, History, Emory University, 1998
  • BA, History and African Studies, Northwestern University, 1995

Teaching Schedule

Course Num Title Meets Syllabus
HIST 372-001 Topics in Global History: West Africa and the Transatlantic Slave Trade TR 1pm-2:15pm
HIST 372G-001 Topics in Global History: West Africa and the Transatlantic Slave Trade TR 1pm-2:15pm

Courses Taught

  • West Africa and the Transatlantic Slave Trade
  • Seminar in History: Africans, Slavery and the Atlantic World
  • The Myth of the Dark Continent: Africa and Racism
  • Africans in World History: Communities, Cultures, and Ideas
  • History of Southern Africa
  • Honors Seminar: Gold and Vibranium, Reality and Myth in African History
  • Graduate Seminar: African Roots of American Cultures

Teaching Interests

  • Precolonial Africa
  • West Africa and the Slave Trade
  • Africa and Racism
  • Comparative Slavery
  • African Roots of American Culture

Research Interests

  • History of Africa
  • Precolonial West Africa
  • Slavery and Slave Trade
  • State Formation and Cultural Identity
  • African Diaspora

Related Activities

Faculty Coordinator, African Studies Forum


Biographical Sketch

Rebecca Shumway is an historian of 18th and 19th century West Africa and the Atlantic World with a focus on coastal Ghana (Fante).

Selected Publications

Shumway, Rebecca. The Fante and the Transatlantic Slave Trade. Rochester: University of Rochester Press, 2011.
Shumway, Rebecca, and Trevor R. Getz, eds. Slavery and Its Legacy in Ghana and the Diaspora. London: Bloomsbury Academic, 2017.
Shumway, Rebecca. "Palaver." Max Planck Encyclopedia of International Procedural Law. (2022).
Shumway, Rebecca. "Public Slavery in the Precolonial Gold Coast (Ghana)." Bulletin of the Institute of Classical Studies 64, no. 2 (2022): 80-91.
Shumway, Rebecca. "West Africa, 1500–1825." In The Cambridge History of America and the World: Volume 1: 1500–1820, edited by Carla Gardina Pestana, Eliga Gould and Paul Mapp, 297-313. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2022.
Shumway, Rebecca. "Emerging Modernities in 19th Century Africa." In Oxford Research Encyclopedia of African History, Oxford University Press, 2020.
Shumway, Rebecca. "Naming Our African Ancestors: Pushing, and Respecting, the Limits." Journal of the Early Republic 40, no. 2 (2020): 195-200.
Shumway, Rebecca. "Exploiting British Ambivalence in West Africa: Fante Sovereignty in the Early Nineteenth Century." In Facing Empire: Indigenous Experiences in a Revolutionary Age, edited by Kate Fullagar and Michael A. McDonnell, 72-90, 2018.
Shumway, Rebecca. "Anti-Slavery in Nineteenth Century Fanteland." In Slavery and Its Legacy in Ghana and the Diaspora, edited by Rebecca Shumway and Trevor R. Getz, 85-104. New York: Bloomsbury Academic Press, 2017.
Shumway, Rebecca. "From Atlantic Creoles to African Nationalists: Reflections on the Historiography of Nineteenth-Century Fanteland." History in Africa 42 (2015): 139-64.
Shumway, Rebecca. "Castle Slaves of the Eighteenth Century Gold Coast." Slavery and Abolition: A Journal of Slave and Post-Slave Studies 35, no. 1 (2014): 84-98.
Shumway, Rebecca. "Palavers and Treaty-Making in the British Acquisition of the Gold Coast Colony (West Africa)." Chap. 7 In Empire by Treaty: Negotiating European Expansion, 1600-1900, edited by Saliha Belmessous, 161-85. New York: Oxford, 2014.
Shumway, Rebecca. "Precolonial Political Systems." In Oxford Bibliographies in African Studies, edited by Thomas Spear New York: Oxford University Press, 2013.
Shumway, Rebecca. "The Fante Shrine of Nananom Mpow and the Atlantic Slave Trade in Southern Ghana." International Journal of African Historical Studies 44, no. 1 (2011): 27-44.