Saturday, 21 February 2015

The Life and Legacy of Claudia Jones

Malcolm X holding West Indian Gazette, Claudia Jones on cover 1964

The Life and Legacy of Claudia Jones

Claudia Jones was a towering figure in politics in the second half of the twentieth century in the USA, UK and beyond. She was born in Trinidad. As a child she migrated with her family to the USA, where she became a political activist, Black nationalist and campaigner for freedom, through her communist beliefs. As a result of her political activities, she was deported from the USA in 1955 and she subsequently lived in the UK. She founded Britain's first Black newspaper, The West Indian Gazette and Afro-Asian Caribbean News, in 1958. And she was one of the founders of the Notting Hill Carnival, as a community led response to the Notting Hill race riots of 1958. She died in 1964.
Friday 6 March 2015, 6pm to 8pm
Congress House, Great Russell Street, London WC1B 3LS
A steel band trio will pay from 6pm until 6.30pm.
This will be followed by contributions from Judy Richards, SERTUC Race Relations Committee, (invited), and eminent historians, authors and broadcasters, Professor Mary Davis, Marika Sherwood and Alex Pascall.
The event will be chaired by Betty Joseph, delegate to SERTUC’s Race Relations Committee, from the NUT.
Contact for further information: 
More information from Laurie Heselden: 020 7467 1292 and
Early registrations to be made with Joanne Williams: 020 7467 1220 and

Saturday, 14 February 2015

LSHG Conference: Attlee's Labour Government at Seventy

Attlee’s 1945 Labour Government at Seventy: What is the historical balance sheet?
One Day Event organised by the London Socialist Historians Group

Wolfson Room
Institute of Historical Research
Senate House, Malet Street London

Saturday 28 February 2015
From 11.30am

In 1945 Labour was returned to office with a large majority in the election that marked the end of World War Two and the coalition Government that had ruled from 1939.

Contrary to many expectations Tory leader Winston Churchill was swept from power and replaced by
Clement Attlee’s Labour Government. Many socialists look back on the Attlee Government as an example of what a left-wing Government can achieve. The Welfare State was introduced, including the NHS, and industries were nationalised. Much of this is captured in Ken Loach’s excellent film The Spirit of ‘45.

 Yet the record was not all positive. The Attlee Government sent troops to break strikes, worked on developing a British nuclear bomb and laid the basis for the Cold War in Britain.

This conference, looking back over 70 years, will seek to draw a balance sheet of the positives and negatives of the 1945 Labour Government in a bid to contribute modestly towards a useful and working, historically focused agenda for the left in the present day.

Speakers include

Keith Flett - 'A History of 1945: Beyond Ken Loach'

Ian Birchall - 'Exits from Empire: British and French choices in 1945'

Francis Beckett, Biographer - 'Clement Attlee'

John Newsinger - 'Labour, the Welfare State and Korea'

Mike Sheridan - 'The Labour Independent Group'

Information: contact