Matthew Greer is a Ph.D. Candidate in Anthropology at Syracuse University, where his studies focus on the archaeology of enslaved life. His dissertation project, Assembling Enslaved Lives: Labor, Consumption, and Landscapes in the Northern Shenandoah Valley, uses historical archaeology, Black studies, and assemblage theory to write the stories of enslaved people in back into the history of Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley. By analyzing some of the objects, practices, and institutions that affected, and were affected by enslaved people as they labored, bought and used commodities, and inhabited local landscapes, the project assesses what life was like for those enslaved in the Valley and how enslaved Shenandoahans shaped the region’s political economies. The latter point is especially important because to demonstrate that enslaved people mattered in the Valley is to demonstrate that any history that ignores them is incomplete.
Post fellowship placement: National Science Foundation SBE Postdoctoral Research Fellow, affiliated with the University of Missouri