Hello, English person here with a degree in history (among other things).

First up, Abolition didn’t “happen” in the 1800s and magically end slavery. There were bills passed and gestures made, after a huge amount of work by Black British abolitionists (who remain all but unnamed in the state’s retelling of this moment in history). Africans were still being transported, forced to “breed” and forced into unpaid labour well into the 1900s. Despite American independence, many English families benefited hugely from the de facto continuation of slavery. White Brits also had a collective interest in maintaining a white (Anglo-Saxon) supremacist ideology, as they benefited from the occupation of colonial territories up until 1997. They arguable still occupy colonial territories, such as Diego Garcia, which was “rented out” to the American military and it’s entire population forced into statelessness.

Some books to help clear up your lack of knowledge in this area:

  • Baracoon by Zora Neale Hurston
  • Natives by Akala
  • Black Tudors by Miranda Kaufmann
  • Brit(ish) by Afua Hirsch

Enjoy!

China specialist, feminist, political scientist in progress. Reviews, socialism & everyday academia. Low-brow, no jargon/acronyms. Editor of The Open Bookshelf.

China specialist, feminist, political scientist in progress. Reviews, socialism & everyday academia. Low-brow, no jargon/acronyms. Editor of The Open Bookshelf.