The sites involved in Nat Turner’s 1831 rebellion are important for understanding the memorialization of freedom.

This article engages with racial spatial politics using Black Feminist Geographies’ methods.

The study of Black Feminist Hauntology gives us a framework for analyzing how past power relations determine present constructions of Black space and livability.


On August 21–22, 1831, led by Nat Turner, a group of free and enslaved Black men engaged in the largest slave rebellion to ever take place on US soil. Marching across Southampton County, VA, this rebellion created a Black freedom trail. This freedom trail, however, has no official memorials, monuments, or tours – unlike those found in places like Boston or Philadelphia. By employing the theoretical and methodological processes, rememory (a place where images of the past can be stored), and remembering (the act of using memory to reassemble that which has been broken apart), or Black Feminist Hauntology, this article investigates why Nat Turner’s Freedom Trail is denied memorialization. Black Feminist Hauntology works against traditional memory to highlight how violence against Black people is made legitimate by geography, in the form of state-sponsored roads, historical markers, and restored houses.


Additional Information

Print ISSN
pp. 130-145
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.