Ayana Omilade Flewellen is a UC President’s Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of California Berkeley. Her research and teaching interests are shaped by and speak to Black Feminist Theory, historical archaeology, public and community-engaged archaeology, processes of identity formations, and representations of slavery.
The bulk of her research interests span geographically across the archaeology of the African Diaspora. She has conducted archaeological excavations and oral historical research related to slavery and freedom in the U.S. South as well as the Caribbean. Her current book project, tentatively titled A Black Feminist Archaeology of Adornment, builds off her dissertation research that examined sartorial practices of self-making among African American tenant, sharecropping and landowning farmers in post-emancipated Texas. Sartorial practices, in this forthcoming work, are defined as social-cultural practices, shaped by many intersecting operations of power and oppression including racism, sexism, and classism, that involve modifications of the corporal form (e.g., scarification, body piercings and hair alteration), and all three-dimensional supplements added to the body (e.g., clothing, hair combs, jewelry).
She currently is the Co-PI of the Estate Little Princess Archaeology Project, an award-winning collaborative community engaged archaeological project based on the island of St. Croix, USVI.