Shennette Garrett-Scott, an associate professor of history and African American Studies, is featured on the PBS documentary series Boss: The Black Experience in Business, which premiered April 23, 2019.
Dr. Garrett-Scott is a historian of gender, race, and capitalism. Her first book Banking on Freedom: Black Women in U.S. Finance Before the New Deal (COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY PRESS 2019) is the first full-length history of finance capitalism that centers black women and the banking institutions and networks they built from the eve of the Civil War to the Great Depression. Black women played essential roles in black communities’ efforts to use finance to carve out possibilities within U.S. capitalism and society. Financial institutions and practices represented a terrain upon which black women worked out familial and community strategies to achieve economic and social justice under the Jim Crow system of racial apartheid—even as those same institutions and practices constrained what constituted justice.
Her forthcoming projects include “Domesticating Racial Capitalism,” about industrial sewing schools during early Reconstruction; Horror Island, about peonage and bootlegging in the Deep South; and Black Empire, about a colony of African American sharecroppers in Mexico during the Porfirian regime.