Daughters of the Dust: Inspiring black story telling for a generation

By Precious Agbabiaka I remember just over a year ago being completely captivated by Beyoncé’s visual album Lemonade. The scenes belonging to the chapters “Hope” and “Redemption” from the hour long masterpiece brought me so much joy and renewed sense of pride as I bore witness to black girls and women, including some familiar faces,… Read More

Our treatment of prisoners condemns us all

by Maurice Mcleod  There’s an old cliché that you judge a society by how it treats its weakest and while this is still a very good measure I’d argue the real test of a society is how it treats it least popular members. In Britain, as in most societies, the people who garner the least… Read More

Blackbirding: a story of forced labour in Australia

by Karen Williams  Sugar production is synonymous with forced labour and enslavement in the Caribbean and the Americas, and it is often associated with a high degree of exploitation. The production of the crop in Australia and the Pacific was no exception: and although it is not widely acknowledged, Australia’s sugar industry came about because… Read More

The Koh-i-Noor diamond and why British Historians must be de-colonised

by Marcus Stow  India would like some of the British Empire’s spoils back, and have made it known with a campaign to return the Koh-i-Noor diamond, worth £105m and currently set in the Queen Mother’s crown. It’s not of course a unique situation, as campaigns for the return of the Parthenon Marbles and other loot… Read More

How Britain buried the brutality of its colonial past

by Maya Goodfellow A statue of Sir Charles Napier stands in Trafalgar Square. Napier looks out over one of London’s most famous tourist sites and is, quite benignly, described as a ‘General’. He was more than that. This man, commemorated in statue-form, was responsible for conquering Sindh in 1843, a province in what was then… Read More

France’s refusal to pay Haiti reparations is a symptom of an even wider issue

by Halimat Shode   Last Tuesday, President Hollande arrived in Haiti – the first French president to make an official visit since Haiti’s independence – and declared that France had a ‘moral debt’ to the Caribbean country. Yet his declaration avoided any mention of the debt that France has enforced on Haiti since 1825, and… Read More

What are Respectability Politics, and Why do We Subscribe to Them?

by Maurice Dolberry You may not be familiar with the term “respectability politics”, but you’ve heard them before.  Maybe you’ve even engaged in them.  Whether it’s Don Lemon’s ranting, actor Romany Malco’s open letter to Trayvon Martin sympathizers following the George Zimmerman trial, Bill Cosby’s 2004 “Pound Cake speech” or even The Talk co-host Sheryl… Read More

Muscovado review: An alternative narrative that restores the humanity slaves were denied

by Ella Achola Matilda Ibini’s Muscovado, a BurntOut theatre production is set on the Fairbranch sugar plantation in 19th century Barbados where Miss Kitty struggles to keep her household together. Performed in the front of Holy Trinity Church in Clapham Common, the place where William Wilberforce first began his abolition campaign, Muscovado centres the slaves… Read More

A Forgotten Part of British History: Belle

CONTENT NOTE: This review will contain spoilers. by Shane Thomas  If I asked 20 people to name me a superhero movie, I’d expect to get a high degree of variance in the answers. But if I asked for a movie about slavery? I don’t think it’s much of a stretch to foretell that the majority… Read More

The Price Tag on Slavery is Beyond Pounds and Dollars

By Patrick Vernon CARICOM, an organisation representing fifteen Caribbean countries, is in the process of taking legal action against the UK, France, Spain, Portugal, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and Denmark in pursuit of reparation for the enduring suffering caused by the Atlantic slave trade. A ten point plan which will form the basis of the… Read More