Meleisa is an innovative public and social-cultural historian of race, gender and sexuality, with a focus on Black women’s histories in Britain and the Anglo-Caribbean.
Meleisa is interested in constructions of 'race' and the ways people oppressed within society negotiate and navigate structures of power and inequality. Her previous study explored the ways in which women of African-descent in Jamaica were discussed in relation to prostitution, concubinage and other forms of sexual-economic exchange in legal, political and cultural discourses in nineteenth-century Jamaica and Britain.
Meleisa is currently working on a book that attempts to reconstruct the lives of five women of African ancestry in nineteenth century Britain and that explores the politics of Black women’s history in Britain. This book brings together Meleisa’s interest in Black women’s history and her interest 'ethical' historical methodologies that empower and liberate marginalized communities, particularly Black British communities.
In addition to the book, Meleisa is in the early stages of a new community-engaged, collaborative and interdisciplinary project looking at experiences of African-diasporic women and mothering in late nineteenth-century Britain. In addition to her historical research expertise, Meleisa is also an experienced leader in anti-racist pedagogy and inclusive teaching practice. She is currently involved in pedagogical research on student engagement, particularly in relation to Black and Students of Colour student experience, student-community engagement, anti-racist pedagogies and inclusivity in teaching and the curriculum. She is the co-chair of the Anti-Racist Pedagogy and Process Learning Circle, co-chair of the Race Equality Taskforce and project lead for the Tackling Racial Inequality at Warwick Staff Development Programme at the University of Warwick. Meleisa is also the co-lead for the project, "Decolonialism" and anti-racist student activism' led by Ala Sirriyeh (funded by The Sociological Review Foundation and British Academy/Leverhulme).