Friday, 31 August 2012

Petition for an amnesty for London Met students

Please sign this petition and distribute widely.
'We believe that it is completely contrary to natural justice that students should be punished for problems emanating from their University.

We therefore demand that the UK Border Agency agree to an immediate amnesty for the international students at London Metropolitan University affected by the Agency's decision to revoke the University's ‘Highly Trusted Status’. This would enable them to continue their studies while the problems at London Met were addressed.

We believe that the UKBA's decision is a disproportionate reaction to a situation that could be addressed without the recourse to such drastic action. The UKBA's decision punishes thousands of students who are entirely innocent of any alleged immigration breaches and sends a disastrous message to the rest of the world that UK higher education is not accessible to international students. Its actions threaten the immediate futures of thousands of London Metropolitan students, as well as the future of the University, and casts a huge shadow over the very valuable contribution that international students make to the culture and sustainability of UK higher education.'

Edited to add:
Protest to Defend London Met Students
Wednesday 5th September, 1pm
outside the Home Office’s headquarters, 2 Marsham Street, London, SW1P 4DF
backed by London Met’s UCU and Unison union branches

Thursday, 23 August 2012

CfP: Radical Americas

Call for Papers
Radical Americas
Institute of the Americas, University College London
28-29 January 2013

"To be a radical is no more than... to go to the roots".
José Martí, "A la raíz" in Patria (26 August, 1893)

In recent years, a significant body of research has been undertaken into the various historical, political and social contexts in which political radicalism has developed throughout the Americas. However, little effort has been made to highlight the benefits of comparative or transnational approaches to these developments.
This event (at UCL’s new Institute of the Americas) will seek to address this problem by bringing a range of disciplinary and geographical perspectives to bear on the issue of radicalism in the Americas. It will consist of a two-day symposium designed to promote the existence of an international community of researchers whose work ranges in disciplinary focus from political science and international relations to history, literature, and cultural studies. A selection of papers stemming from the symposium will be submitted for a planned edited volume. In addition to the academic papers, there will be films, poetry and songs.
The proposed definition of “radicalism” is a broad one, encompassing both political radicalism as an object of study, and radical analytical approaches to societies and cultures of the Americas. We aim to begin with the democratic and republican radicalisms of the nineteenth century; to then move through the socialist, anarchist, communist, populist and social-democratic radicalisms of the early to mid twentieth century; finally, to confront identity politics, the New Left, social movements and contemporary state radicalisms.
The symposium aims to include papers ranging both geographically and temporally, and will encourage conversation between scholars working on specific national topics and those whose focus is comparative or transnational. Subjects might include:
· State and non-state radicalisms
· Anti-imperialism and solidarity movements
· Radical populism in contemporary and historical perspective
· Race and radicalism
· Radical art, literature, music and architecture
· The Cold War
· Feminist and LGBTQ activism
· Anti-radicalism and the contested nature of radicalisms
· National and transnational labour movements

If you wish to give a paper, please send a proposal of no more than 300 words along with a short CV to the contact details below. Papers should be of 20 minutes duration. There will be a number of travel bursaries available for postgraduate presenters, and information about accommodation options will be available shortly.

The deadline for abstracts is 30th September 2012 but we strongly encourage an early response.
Email: radicalamericas [at ]
Conference Website:

Black and Asian Britain seminars

Institute of Commonwealth Studies, in conjunction with the Black & Asian Studies Association

Black and Asian Britain seminars
Senate House, University of London, Russell Square, London WC1 
6 to 7.30 pm,
Everyone is welcome. You do not have to pre-book/register.

26 September 2012, 17.30 - 19.00
The Black Abolitionists of the eighteenth century: Africans in Britain’s resistance to slavery and inequality
Speaker: Onyeka
Venue: Room 104, First Floor, Senate House

2 October 2012  (Montague Room [Room G26], Ground floor)
Rizwan Butt
An exploration of parenting practices and negotiations in multi-ethnic and multi-racial families within the context of diasporic histories and multi-racist Britain.

6 November (Senate Room, first floor)
Tony Walker,  Founder of  Black History Walks UK
Black history on the streets of London: a virtual walk through 5 different parts of the city, bringing the past to your doorstep
This will be a sample of all the walks, from 1500 BCE to 2000.

4 December (room 261, second floor)
Jeff Green  
African Americans in Britain 1850-1865
A wide-ranging summary of the Black American presence with details and evidence to support the view that escaped or "fugitive" slaves were just one aspect of British history in those years.

15 January, 2013 (room G26, ground floor)

Hannah Murray
“A Wall of Anti-Slavery Fire" - Frederick Douglass in Britain. 
Former African American slave Frederick Douglass visited Britain in the1840's, popularising anti-slavery, creating a sensation across the country and enhancing the transatlantic connections between abolitionists.

26 February (Court Room, first floor)

Dr Rina Arya, University of Wolverhampton (Court Room, first floor)
The 1980s: Black art and socio-politics
I shall look at black visual art in the 1980s in Britain to examine the collaborations that occurred and the work that was being produced in reaction to the socio-politics of the day. 

5 March (room G35,  ground floor)
Julian Simpson, University of Manchester
Racism, heterophobia and the structural impact of South Asian doctors on the development of British General Practice (c. 1948 - c. 1983)'           
This talk will outline how the actions of South Asian doctors working within a discriminatory environment facilitated the delivery of one of the key aims of the NHS when it was
established: the provision of primary care to those who could least afford it.

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

A Century of Anti-Communisms

Inaugural conference of PSA Communism Specialist Group, University of Manchester, Friday 21 September 2012
Venue: Arthur Lewis Building (boardroom), Social Sciences, University of Manchester (no 36 on campus map
Registration: free to PSA members, £15 to non-members (£10 students and unwaged) to cover lunch and refreshments. Both members and non-members of the PSA should please register in advance
Contact: or to register for this event or for further information

Celebrate Ten Years of Love Music Hate Racism

Saturday 15 September, East London -  more details here

Paul Gilroy (author)
Salma Yaqoob (campaigner)
Mike Rosen (author/broadcaster)
Hugh Lanning (PCS deputy gen sec)
Drew McConnell (musician)
Zita Holbourne (poet)
Pandit G (DJ)
Ken Livingstone
Edie Freeman (campaigner)
Martin Smith (LMHR)
Mark Steel (comedian)
Weyman Bennett (campaigner)
Alan Gibbons (author)
Chritine Blower (NUT gen sec)
Elly Barnes (LGBT activist)
Morris Beckman (43 Group, anti-fascist veeran)
Jerry Dammers (musician)
Get Cape Wear Cape Fly (musician)
Don Letts (film maker/musician)

Monday, 6 August 2012

Book Launch: Mixed Company - Three Early Jamaican Plays

Oberon Books / New Beacon Books / George Padmore Institute invite you to the launch of
MIXED COMPANY: Three Early Jamaican Plays edited by Yvonne Brewster.
This new collection is a celebration of the 50th anniversary of Jamaican independence.
Please join us for a drinks reception and a reading from special guest Linton Kwesi-Johnson.
Venue: New Beacon Books, 76 Stroud Green Rd, London, N4 3EN (nearest tube: Finsbury Park)
Date: Thursday 9 August 2012
Time: 18:30 20:00pm
RSVP: RSVP via email to or call 0207 607 3645 / 0207 272 4889
Mixed Company: Three Early Jamaican Plays
The Creatures by Cicely Waite-Smith (1954)
Bedward by Louis Marriott (1960)
Maskarade by Sylvia Wynter (1970)
In August this year Jamaica celebrates the 50th anniversary of Independence. Mixed Company contains three of the finest early Jamaican stage plays, written mostly before the dawn of Independence. The plays were conceived with a Jamaican audience in mind, an audience conscious of the melting pot in which it lived. Each offers a unique perspective on the spirit of a people who held on to traditional beliefs and customs in the face of colonial opprobrium as the populace struggled to gain political, social and cultural independence.
ISBN: 9781849432160 | RRP: £14.99
New Beacon Books
76 Stroud Green Road
London N4 3EN
Tel. +44 (0) 20 7272 4889