Black and British by David Olusoga review – reclaiming a lost past | Books | The GuardianA Waterstones. Longlisted for the Orwell Prize. Shortlisted for the inaugural Jhalak Prize. In this vital re-examination of a shared history, historian and broadcaster David Olusoga tells the rich and revealing story of the long relationship between the British Isles and the people of Africa and the Caribbean. It shows that the great industrial boom of the nineteenth century was built on American slavery, and that black Britons fought at Trafalgar and in the trenches of both World Wars. Black British history is woven into the cultural and economic histories of the nation. It is not a singular history, but one that belongs to us all.
Black and British A Forgotten History Season 1 Episode 4 The Homecoming
Drawing on new genetic and genealogical research, original records, expert testimony and contemporary interviews, Black and Britis h reaches back to Roman Britain, the medieval imagination and Shakespeare's Othello. It reveals that behind the South Sea Bubble was Britain's global slave-trading empire and that much of the great industrial boom of the nineteenth century was built on American slavery. Black British history can be read in stately homes, street names, statues and memorials across Britain and is woven into the cultural and economic histories of the nation.
Black and British
Occasionally, very occasionally, there were times when a dark skin conferred an advantage. He must be of a deep black complexion. In the fashionable portraits of the age artists took particular pleasure in emphasising the contrast with the white skin of the master or mistress. Get The International Pack for free for your first 30 days for unlimited Smartphone and Tablet access. Already a member?
Hakim Adi. I have been researching and writing about black British history for over 30 years but never before have I been fortunate enough to review a page book on the subject, published to accompany a recent major BBC documentary. Why it should be forgotten, and who might have forgotten it should give us all pause for reflection, since the denial of black British history by those who should know better could be considered tantamount to racism. The latest archaeological techniques and historical research show that in Roman Britain there were many individuals of African heritage of all classes. It seems likely that soon we will have more conclusive evidence that Africans were travelling to Britain long before the arrival of the Romans. Black and British also builds on the work of previous historians for its depiction of the African presence in Tudor England, including individuals becoming better known, such as the royal trumpeter John Blanke and the diver Jacques Francis. It is perhaps not surprising that, when describing the centuries of imperial expansion, historians have underplayed the fact that Britain then led the world in human trafficking.
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H ow do you make black British history palatable to white Britons? Actually, hold on a second. How do you make it palatable to black Britons? The answer during my childhood was to accentuate the positive; to tweak the past, for instance, so that schoolchildren were left with the impression that slavery was somehow an abhorrent North American practice and that the British, through the good works of William Wilberforce , should be commended for their part in bringing about the end of the Atlantic slave trade. Three decades ago Peter Fryer offered a corrective, stripping off the historical bandage. But it also elicits a flush of excitement and pride.
By the time he was 14, the National Front had attacked his house on more than one occasion, requiring police protection for him and his family. They were eventually forced to leave as a result of the racism. Realising that black people were much less visible in the media and historically, Olusoga became a producer of history programmes after university, working from on programmes such as Namibia Genocide and the Second Reich , The Lost Pictures of Eugene Smith and Abraham Lincoln: Saint or Sinner? In it was announced that he would co-present Civilisations , a sequel to Kenneth Clark 's television documentary series Civilisation , alongside the historians Mary Beard and Simon Schama. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.