Pan-London voluntary group BTWSC/African Histories Revisited and related associations expect to productively occupy your Mondays in November to early December, by offering a varied menu of accessible history programmes touch on topics seldom covered anywhere else. As it’s via Zoom (https://bit.ly/NovDecXtra), the target audience is international, rather than the usual London-focus.
The Sessions Plus are family-friendly, and aim to improve knowledge of little-known British African history through an accessible and engaging manner that cuts across age; ethnicity; geographical location; knowledge specialism. In other words, ALL are welcome!
The format of the Sessions, which take place 6-9pm (UK GMT), starts with the screening of a specially made or re-configured video that provides some historical context to the topic of discussion. From 6-8pm, the discussion focused on the evening’s topic aspect as raised in the video, led by music industry and history consultant Kwaku, with input from a special guest. From 8-9pm, the audience is allowed to take the discussion on any way it wants. A poll will be conducted towards the end, to gauge attendee views on particular aspects of the discussion.
The Sessions, which started on Nov. 2, continue on Nov. 16 with Today Brixton Is Locked Off: The Day Black Lives Matter Shut Down Brixton: in the summer of 2016 a BLM protest locked down Brixton for over six hours without major incident. But how do young heads learn from the elders in order to strategise their activism? The special guest to help move the discussion forward is the veteran political activist Marc Wadsworth.
On Nov. 23, the topic is Police And The Criminalising Of The African British Youths By Numbers: highlights little-known and cause célèbre cases involving groups of African youths, such as Tottenham Court Road Two, Stockwell Six, Oval Four, Oval House 4, Mangrove Nine, Waterloo Four, Cricklewood 12 and the Thornton Heath 15. This event marks Mangrove Nine @ 50 and is in solidarity with all who were victims of the police’s misuse of the sus law powers. The special guest is community activist Cecil Gutzmore.
We do things a bit differently on Nov. 30 when we present Reading British African History In Books: We’re aiming ESPECIALLY FOR PARENTS, TEACHERS, RESEARCHERS & LOVERS OF HISTORY, as we take a look at the history of documenting British African history in books; highlighting a selection of recently published lists, a personal selection and reflection by the special guest, plus opportunities to discuss particular books and their merits; plus the chance to order books on the night. The special guest is community historian Tony Warner, who has a book based on his Black History walks coming out in December.
We end our year’s programme on Dec. 7 with Black Music And A History Of Racism In Britain: Dec. 7 1507-Dec. 7 2020: music industry and history consultant Kwaku presents a video-assisted presentation mapping out a complex 500+ year history of the interaction between black music and African musicians, and racism in Britain. Based mainly on documented facts with anecdotal and assumptive asides, it covers from the wicked consequences, the surprising, the resilience, the conquering, the I-didn’t-know-that to the fancy-that, and lots more in between! An unmissable learning forum with space for you to have your say. Please note that this Xtra History Final 2020 Session early bird £5 deal ends on Nov. 30: www.bitly.com/MusicAndRacism1507_2020.
We have a related event you need to be aware of. There’s also another opportunity for allies, particularly gate-keepers and those championing race/ethnicity-facing diversity change, to understand the politics of language and its impact on their diversity, anti-racist and decolonising work. Due to popular request, BTWSC/African Histories Revisited is repeating a retooled version of the Interrogating Language Of Identity And Decolonising event. The Nov. 25 event is entitled Interrogating Language 3: Identity, Decolonising, Reparations; Araning & Should Africans Have African Names?
Due to popular demand we’re offering the third iteration of this programme on Identity, which has been re-tooled, following the various discussions on BAME and other racial terminologies, plus the last hour will be given to Should Africans Have African Names?, which explores the issue of araning, and the option for people of African heritage to adopt or use African names within the context of reparations and decolonising activism.
Click here to read Kwaku’s article in the BHM October 2020 magazine entitled ‘Interrogating The Language Of Identity And Decolonisation’.
This Zoom (https://bit.ly/IdentityLanguage2) meeting is the forum for exploring identity language and terminologies within the workplace, academia, heritage, political and anti-racist spaces, from a British African context.
These events are open to everyone, including those from non-AAME (African, Asian, Minority Ethnic) backgrounds, who since George Floyd’s death have been firming their allyship by reading African history and biographies, and attending racism training programmes.
Photo by Des Chisholm (BTWSC/AHR)
History consultant Kwaku presenting ‘The Commemorating African Jubilee Year 1987-88 @ 30’, about the history Of Black History Month In Britain, at City Hall in 2018