JCL Note: Victoria was hired to work on the project in the Spring ’23 semester — we’re very excited that she’s part of the team! We asked her to tell you all a little bit about herself.
My name is Victoria Dey and I am a second year Ph.D. student in the Northeastern University World History program. I specialize in Black France and comparative experiences of racial consciousness in the Black Diaspora. Although my research typically has a global lens, I am working on a certificate in Public History which has involved work with local Boston historical projects.
My coursework and research assistant positions have been centered around communities of color and digital archiving. In the Spring of 2022, I took a course called Documenting Field Narratives, where I recorded the oral history of a Black artist in Boston and completed a digital archive project of his works on Omeka S. In the Fall of 2022, I took a course called Topics in Public History, where students were tasked with re-evaluating the inclusivity of walking tours for The West End Museum in Boston. I was responsible for finding new ways to include underrepresented groups such as African Americans and women within the tour which I accomplished through visuals, thematic grouping, and the use of StoryMapsJS.
Since the summer of 2022, I have also served as a research assistant for the Reckonings Project, a local history platform for the community archivist. Its goal is to co-create physical and digital archives in partnership with underrepresented communities, to deinstitutionalize archiving practices by working with groups like Black Artists of Boston and the Haitian Women’s Association. The digital component of these projects proved to be very effective in the accessibility, distribution, and preservation of these community stories. I used platforms such as Omeka S, an open-publishing platform for digital collections, Northeastern’s Digital Repository Service which provides faculty and staff to securely store and share administrative and faculty materials and StoryMaps.
In my new role as head research manager for the 3D Black Boston project, I hope to bring to life the narrative of David Walker in the years leading up to the writing of The Appeal as we reimagine what the objects in his home can tell us about his life.