The History of South Sudan Presented at Saturday Bridges with Michael LaRue
The Saturday Bridges Program will host Michael LaRue on March 31. He will present on the history of South Sudan.
Dr. LaRue grew up in Michigan, attended the University of Michigan, and had a Junior Year abroad at the Univeristé d’Aix-en-Provence. After graduation, He joined the Peace Corps, and taught English in Gafsa, Tunisia for two years. He is a trained Africanist, with a Ph.D in African history from Boston University. He did field work in Dar Fur, Sudan on the social and economic history of the Dar Fur Sultanate, 1785-1875. Dar Fur developed a system of land tenure based on sultanic land grants, which overlaid earlier patterns based on kinship and ethnicity. Dar Fur also was a major source of slaves for Egypt, and he conducted several hundred interviews with former slaves, their descendants, and the descendants of former slave traders and trans-Saharan caravan leaders.
Dr. LaRue has taught African history at several universities, including Boston University, Wellesley College, Brown University, the University of North Carolina (Greensboro), El Collegio de Mexico, and Clarion University of Pennsylvania (where he spent the bulk of his career). Recently, he has been following the lives of enslaved Sudanese (in the nineteenth century) into Egypt and beyond. This has led most recently to research in Paris at the Bibliothèque Nationale and the Saint-Simonian Archives, and the Church Missionary Archive at the University of Birmingham (England).