ERIF’s Top 8 Black History Month Tips

The UK is now half way through its Black History Month and as always there are many incredible events and initiatives to inspire, uplift and educate. While some question the necessity of a month dedicated to black history and others criticize restricting black histories to one month only, movements such at the University of Colour and Why is my curriculum white? prove the discourses we are exposed to and institutions available to us ignore non-white contributions and journeys. Therefore, while black history is 365 days a year, this month maintains its importance.

With that being said, ERIF brings you our top 8 tips for the rest of the month:

Activities and Events

60 Untold Strories – The Friends of Marsha Phoenix and Goldsmiths University offer an exhibition throughout October, exploring “the educational experiences of the first Black Caribbean children to successfully pass through the British Education system” using photographs, a documentary and audio clips, which are also available via this website.

Black History Month Greater Manchester – If you’re from the Greater Manchester part of the country (or nearby!), check out this website for details on events happening near you throughout October. From conferences and exhibitions, to dance classes and spoken word performances – there will be something for everyone!

Black Georgians: The Shock of the Familiar – Black Cultural Archives presents a free exhibition called Black Georgians: The Shock of the Familiar between 9 October 2015 and  9 April 2016 exploring the lives of ordinary black people living in Britain between the 1700 and 1800s, destroying the myth that Blighty was a white island until the Second World War.

Resources

Prominent Black and Mixed Race Men of Renaissance Europe – Our friends over at Bino & Fino recently re-posted this fantastic piece – originally from blogger Maria Tumolo – of iconic and influential black and mixed race men you won’t find in the average history text book. These guys who lived in Europe throughout the Renaissance era (14th – 17th century) threaten the popular thought that Europe was an entirely white space until midway through the 20th century. Tumolo aims to follow up soon with a post on women too so keep your eyes peeled for that!

NUS Black Students’ Black History Month Guide – the Black National Union of Students in the UK published this document earlier this month to explain the history and necessity for black history month, as well as offering advice on activities to get involved in as well as black activists to acknowledge.

Know your black history: slave revolts part 1 – Afropunk recently shared an enlightening article revealing the intimate and powerful relationships forged between Native Americans and black slaves from as early as the 1500s to rebel against the racist and colonial system being built around – and upon – them.

Medieval People of Colour – If you’re on Tumblr you should definitely follow this blog which shares images of and information about people of colour who were living in and travelling arond Europe over the last 1000 years, shattering a misconceptions of the indigenous European population. This is an excellent historical resource that should be referenced much more often.

Women of colour and the suffragette movement in Britain – Anna Leszkiewicz recently published an article for the New Statesman entitled What did the suffragette movement in Britain really look like? This article – published following the controversy surrounding the release of the new film Suffragette, which ignored the presence of women of colour within the movement – explores the contributions women such as Sophia Duleep Singh made to this important moment of the Women’s Liberation Movement in the UK.

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