Jessica Marie Johnson is an Assistant Professor of History at Michigan State University.

Johnson holds a Ph.D. and M.A. in History from the University of Maryland, College Park and a B.A. in African & African American Studies from Washington University in St. Louis where she was also a Mellon-Mays Undergraduate Fellow.

Her research interests include women, gender, and sexuality in the African diaspora; histories of slavery and the slave trade; and digital history and new media and has appeared in Slavery & Abolition and Meridians: Feminism, Race and Transnationalism.

As a digital humanist, Johnson is interested in ways digital and social media disseminate and create historical narratives, in particular, comparative histories of slavery and people of African descent, and the power of radical media to create social change. In 2008, she founded African Diaspora, Ph.D., a blog highlighting scholars and scholarship in the field of Atlantic African diaspora history. Johnson continues to make media as a member of two collaborative projects: the LatiNegrxs Project, a Tumblr and community interrogating Afrxlatinidad from the lens of transformative justice; and the Queering Slavery Working Group which she co-organizes with Vanessa Holden (Michigan State).

Johnson has two works in progress. One is a history of free women of African descent laboring, living, and traveling between eighteenth-century Senegal, Saint-Domingue, and Gulf Coast Louisiana. The second, in collaboration with Mark Anthony Neal (Duke University), is a compilation of work reading nineteenth-century black codes against present-day race coding and digital vernaculars of people of African descent. Johnson is also a contributor and member of the African American Intellectual Society Blog.

She’s the recipient of research fellowships and awards from the Woodrow Wilson Foundation, the Gilder-Lehrman Institute, and the Richards Civil War Era Center and Africana Research Center at the Pennsylvania State University. She was recently named a 2015-2016 Mellon Postdoctoral Scholar in the Program in African American History at the Library Company of Philadelphia.

Johnson tweets as @jmjafrx. Learn more about her research here and here.

(c.v. available by request)

Fields of Study:

United States, African American, and Atlantic African Diaspora history Black Studies Women and Gender Studies

Teaching & Research Interests

Atlantic African diaspora (emphasis on ‘free people of color’ in Africa and the Americas); women, gender, and sexuality during the period of Atlantic slavery; slavery in history and memory; diaspora and race theory; digital media-making, social media, and digital history; Afr@latinidad; New Orleans history and culture.

Contact Information

Mailing Address: Jessica Marie Johnson | Assistant Professor | Department of History | Old Horticulture | 506 E. Circle Dr | Room 256 | East Lansing, MI 48824 | (517) 884-4876 | jmj@msu.edu | jmjohnso.com


African Diaspora, Ph.D. – http://africandiasporaphd.com
Diaspora Hypertext, the Blog – http://diasporahypertext.com

Social Media:

Facebook – http://facebook.com/jmjohnsophd
Twitter – @jmjafrx
The Diaspora Hypertext Tumblr – http://jmjafrx.tumblr.com


                last update: 2015 June 11 | 18:16:48