First year of Jhalak Prize paints a grim picture of diversity in publishing 

Sunny Singh takes a look at the entries for the first year of our prize for writers of colour, finding the industry is missing more than one trick Read More

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What’s the point of a literature festival? | Bare Lit 2017

by Henna Zamurd-Butt  Literature festivals don’t have a point, right? Or at least not one that can get into the writing and move it around. The text is fixed on paper and pixel by the time we get to discussing it. Perhaps for the literary establishment the text is fixed, but here where Bare Lit… Read More

Inaugural Jhalak Prize Shortlist Announced

The Jhalak Prize announced its inaugural shortlist today. The prize for Book of the Year by a Writer of Colour was described by Chair Sunny Singh as showcasing “the variety, scope, depth, and literary excellence to be found amongst writers of colour in Britain today…”. Judge Musa Okwonga added that, “six books that could not… Read More

A Belly Full of Stories: exploring the history of Caribbean food in the UK

by Henna Zamurd-Butt When Riaz Phillips, founder of Tezeta Press, tried to look into the history behind the food of one of the UK’s most prominent and influential diaspora communities all he could find, from the British Library to the Black Cultural Archives were tantalising but passing references to Caribbean eateries. So he spent over… Read More

Decolonise, not Diversify

by Kavita Bhanot Since the recent failure of World Book Night to include any writers of colour in its 2015 list, there has been a fresh bout of conversation about the need for more ‘diversity’ in the literature that is published and awarded in Britain, as well as amongst those working in publishing. Alongside a… Read More

Too Asian, Not Asian Enough

by Kavita Bhanot First published in Asia Literary Review Over the last two decades, in part due to the success of a small number of novels, plays, films, music albums and television shows, the term ‘British Asian’ has emerged as an identity marker associated with the cultural practices of second-generation South Asian immigrants, born and/or… Read More

Does Canada damage black people? | Part 2

“When You’re Strange” by Zetta Elliott  PART II I felt like a stranger in my family—and in my country of origin, Canada—long before my father ever spoke those hurtful words. Orville Douglas is a dark-skinned, gay, Black man and no doubt his experience of discrimination in Toronto is informed by his identity, his personality, and—I suspect—his… Read More

Does Canada damage black people?

by Zetta Elliot “When You’re Strange” Last semester I was displeased but not surprised when a student raised her hand at the end of class and asked how I felt about my hometown’s crack-smoking mayor. Rob Ford is ridiculous enough to be quickly dismissed, but another controversy emerged from Toronto last fall that was deeply… Read More

Writing and Reading While Black. Lessons learned.

by Shannon Barber I spotted this article “You can’t do that! Stories have to be about White people”  on tumblr a week or so ago and have been ruminating about it. No seriously go read it. I also highly recommend watching the attached video but you can do that when you’re done here. Now let me… Read More