Black history – Black struggle

Black history – Black struggle

Press Release

Written by: Institute of Race Relations

Race & Class October 2011 examines hitherto neglected areas of black history by unknown black strugglers across the last century.

The story of the 1975 Spaghetti House siege is, for the first time, told from the inside, by protagonist Shujaa Moshesh drawing on his letters and poems from prison. From across the Atlantic, Stephen Jones an ex-prisoner explains how the US prison regimen he experienced, at the time of The Soledad Brothers, became the classroom for radical black education. Forty years after the Attica prison riots, we republish the Liberation Faction’s Manifesto of Demands as a timely reminder of that milestone in prison resistance. Here is the as yet untold story of Barbadian-born seafarer Chris Braithwaite, the lynchpin of an anti-colonial maritime network in interwar London, and organiser in both the Communist party and the Pan-African movement. How the Communist International and especially the party in the Soviet Union responded to the racism perpetrated by white students against Black US and African students studying at the Lenin School in the 1930s is scrutinised.

Historians of black and socialist history, commentators and activists from the US and UK contribute to Black history – Black struggle.


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The Institute of Race Relations is precluded from expressing a corporate view: any opinions expressed are therefore those of the authors.

One thought on “Black history – Black struggle

  1. There are good and bad people among black and white people. It is the corrupt people of all both groups who pose problems for the decent people of both groups and often set them up to fight. To lump all black people together is simplistic and categorises people by colour and not character which is an important distinction to make. It is a distinction that the Rev. Martin Luther King made in his famous “I have a dream” speech in the sixties.

    Ralph Ellison’s award winning book, The Invisible Man also showed the complex nature of race relations and demonstrated that there are no simple answers. Black people are just as capable of betraying black people and causing them suffering as are racists. We only have to read Alex Haley’s Roots to see how some black people were sold into the hands of racists by other black people for money. Some Asians have also beaten down other Asians for money in history. People are complex and our struggles are complex.

    Even today, minority people are sold to racists by people of their own ethnicity and this is what is happening right now. Some minority people are facilitating racist crimes even murders against promising people of their own ethnicity for personal gain.

    For example, I know of a practising Muslim woman who was slandered widely after she fell out with a couple of wealthy people. She was slandered as a terrorist and a tart and an illegal immigrant and the wealthy people were able to use their wealth to get people of her own ethnicity who she did not even know to slander her widely so she was lied about by recent migrants, minority people in debt, criminals from the minorities, etc. Most of these people didn’t even know her.

    This woman’s home was bugged by racists under the pretense of watching the terrorist and she was terrorised in her own home with normal things she was saying and doing in her own home being pounced upon and twisted in order to make up lie after lie about her. ( This was a woman with a 30 year exemplary work and school record who went to a top 6 university and was well behaved all her life). Her reputation destroyed ( despite having lived an innocent and blameless life), she ended up being the convenient scapegoat for every corrupt person in the workplace and was driven out of work, refused jobs she would have otherwise got and basically, blacklisted on complete LIES.

    She could not get married and have a normal life and has ended up umarried and jobless at 40 despite going to an ivy league university and doing well at work.

    This woman was shunned and made into a pariah owing to this new, sneaky, covert but deadly form of racism and she has suffered terribly physically in recent years and suspects she has been harmed through the NHS and in other ways to frame her and even to take her life.

    She also has strong reason to suspect that people were harming her each time she criticised them even in her own home as she would get sick soon afterwards despite having been in very good health before the hate campaign started.

    This has horrific implications in terms of civil rights and freedom of speech if racists are bugging minority people’s homes and robbing them of the right to freedom of speech even in their own homes!

    She has the means to prove her innocence ( having been to two Muslim doctors to be tested) and she has something else that would prove her innocence and she needs support to clear her name.

    What kind of help is there for this woman?

    P.S. If racists are infiltrating and targeting minority people and natives who they have fallen out with through the NHS, this has wider implications for the whole of society so it would be in everyone’s best interests to investigate her case. This is an innocent woman who has suffered terribly for fifteen years.

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