The Student News Site of Roger Williams University

The Hawks' Herald

The Student News Site of Roger Williams University

The Hawks' Herald

The Student News Site of Roger Williams University

The Hawks' Herald

RWU students engage in horse history

Alyson Lowney

This weekend Roger Williams had the honor of hosting the 2023 Equine History Collective Conference. With multiple events spanning from the 28th to the first students were able to learn about equine topics, from sexism in horse racing to the history of horses in the military. 

This conference was brought to Roger in large part by the work of Associate Professor of History,  Charlotte Carrington-Farmer, who has extended experience in the equine area being published for works such as “The Rise and Fall of the Narragansett Pacer” and ‘Trading Horses in the Eighteenth Century: Rhode Island and the Atlantic World,’. 

This semester she is teaching a senior core seminar called A Kingdom for My Horse-Human Relations which ties into the topic of the conference.  

The keynote session for this event was titled, “Super Horses and Horse Girls” by Katherine Mooney, a professor at Florida State University who has wrote multiple books about racism and its relationship with horses. The talk was hosted at the sailing center and engaged everyone present, as they laughed, winced and groaned at the stories being told. The talk itself was about the sexism the mares, female horses, face especially in the racing field. The speaker and attendees  explored how human gender hierarchies are often mapped onto animals and seemed well informed and passionate about the topic. 

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Even after the Q&A had ended she encouraged the audience to chat with her at the snack bar and ask her any more questions they had.        

Students also had the opportunity to attend events such as “Equines in the Ocean State.” which was all about the breeding and export of horses in the 18th century in Rhode Island, and its ties to slavery.

Overall this conference was a great opportunity for all honors students regardless of their level of experience in the equine field. Many students after leaving the events remarked on how surprised they were to have truly enjoyed themselves all while learning about an interesting topic. Students should keep a key eye out for events like this in the future, as an opportunity to broaden their knowledge and experience something new.    

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