New circuits of anti-racism

New circuits of anti-racism

Fortnightly Bulletin

Written by: IRR News Team

IRR News 15 – 29 September 2022

On Monday 26 September, the IRR was delighted to host a panel event at this year’s The World Transformed festival in Liverpool. ‘IRR50: New circuits of anti-racism’ explored the last half-century of British anti-racism, and how that can inform the struggles of today. Whilst Liz Fekete highlighted how the growth of copwatch and anti-raids groups echoed the monitoring groups of the 1980s, Sophia Siddiqui stressed the importance of connecting anti-racism to feminism and how all of our struggles are interconnected. We were also joined by Surviving Society’s Chantelle Lewis who explained how podcasting continued a tradition of accessible knowledge production outside the academy, and Azfar Shafi, whose co-authored book Race to the Bottom: Reclaiming Antiracism makes urgent calls to learn from our history in order to forge a new path towards stronger, coherent and relevant anti-racist praxis.

Those ‘new circuits of anti-racism’ which the panellists spoke to is exactly what the IRR will be exploring in two weeks’ time at King’s College London. This very special IRR50 conference will bring together key activists and thinkers to discuss not only the enduring influence of our transformation and the ideas of A. Sivanandan, but also urgent questions as to how we should approach new imperialisms and fast-changing geopolitics, and what organisers here can learn from US abolitionist movements to defund and divest from the criminal justice system.

At the heart of this necessary work, is the need for anti-racists to maintain strong institutions. ‘The institute has been around for 50 years and I’ve been reading the IRR’s work for 25 years. It is so important that it has longevity’, said K. Biswas at our Monday event. To that end we also launched our IRR50 fundraiser that day. We’ve had an incredible response so far with over 50 people donating generous sums, with many setting up monthly donations that will ensure the IRR can have that longevity and continue to develop its important work. We are grateful to all of those, past and present who have become friends of the IRR.

Whether you can donate or not, we will continue to make the majority of our work freely accessible, the latest of which you can find below. Free tickets to the IRR50 conference are still available, but move fast, as capacity is limited. For those unable to join us in London, there will be an online viewing for which you can also register on Eventbrite.

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

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