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The Clements Bookworm: Author Conversation with Karen Marrero, “Detroit’s Hidden Channels”

July 16 @ 10:00 am - 11:00 am

The Clements Bookworm is a webinar series in which panelists discuss history topics. In this episode, past Clements fellow and Wayne State University professor Karen Marrero joins us to discuss her new book "Detroit’s Hidden Channels: The Power of French-Indigenous Families in the Eighteenth Century" (Michigan State University Press & University of Manitoba Press, 2020). This episode of the Bookworm is generously sponsored by Douglas Johnson.

Dr. Karen Marrero discusses her new book Detroit’s Hidden Channels: The Power of French-Indigenous Families in the Eighteenth Century (2020). French-Indigenous families of the 18th century were a central force in shaping the history of Detroit. Situated where Anishinaabe, Wendat, Myaamia, and later French communities were established and where the system of waterways linking the Atlantic Ocean to the Gulf of Mexico narrowed, Detroit’s location was its primary attribute. While the French state viewed Detroit as a decaying site of illegal activities, the influence of the French-Indigenous networks grew as members diverted imperial resources to bolster an alternative configuration of power relations. Women furthered commerce by navigating a multitude of gender norms of their nations, allowing them to defy the state that sought to control them by holding them to European ideals of womanhood. By the mid-18th century, French-Indigenous families had become so powerful, incoming British traders and imperial officials courted their favor. These families would maintain that power as the British imperial presence splintered on the eve of the American Revolution.

This episode is generously sponsored by

Douglas Johnson

The Clements Bookworm: Online Event for History Lovers

Panelists and featured guests discuss history topics in this webinar series. Recommended books, articles, and other resources are provided in each session as we vary between formats: Reader Panel, Author Conversation, Collectors Corner, and Fellow Spotlight.

Inspired by the traditional Clements Library researcher tea time, we invite you to pull up a chair at our [virtual] table. Live attendees are encouraged to post comments and questions, respond to polls, and add to our conversation and camaraderie.

Where: Register at You will receive your link to join the meeting via a confirmation email as well as a reminder email one hour before we begin. 

View upcoming topics and past recordings.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I join the meeting?

You can join our Zoom meeting by clicking the meeting link or going to and entering in the meeting ID. 

For a tutorial on how to join a meeting, please see this brief Zoom video.

How do I join computer/device audio?
On most devices, you can join computer/device audio by clicking Join Audio, Join with Computer Audio, or Audio to access the audio settings. Learn more about connecting your audio.

Can I Use Bluetooth Headset?
Yes, as long as the Bluetooth device is compatible with the computer or mobile device that you are using.

What kinds of books will be discussed?

We are asking panelists to discuss their favorite history books. Some, but not all, will feature a connection to the primary source collections at the Clements Library. Upcoming themes will be shared at

Will I be on video?

A webcam is not required to join the book circle and public participants will NOT appear on video. Only the panelists speaking will have their video and microphone active-- guests are encouraged to type in your comments and questions via the chat function.

Can I view a recording and a list of the resources discussed?

Yes! Feel free to register even if you can't attend the meeting, and you will receive a follow-up email with the resource list and video link.

Please see Recordings & Resource Lists for an archive of all past episodes of the Clements Bookworm.

If you need additional assistance, please contact Anne at


July 16
10:00 am - 11:00 am
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