Book Launch: Coming of Age: 1976 and the road to anti-racism

Join us for the launch of the Coming of Age: 1976 and the road to anti-racism and a Q&A with Roger Tanner (local historian), Pushka Lail (Indian Workers Association) chaired by Darshna Soni (Channel 4 News).

Coming of Age pays homage to the forefathers of the anti-racist struggle before 1976, and celebrates the young people from London who changed Britain over the summer of 1976 by challenging the everyday racism of the time.

This book is about anti-racist activism in 1976. The events of 1976; the hostility to Asian refugees, the Grunwick strike, the birth of Southall Youth Movement, riots at Notting Hill carnival, and birth of Rock against Racism are often told separately, as unique events. History, however, is not a series of unique events. these events are inter-connected stories and form part of a longer story of racism and its resistance in Britain. In the book, we recount the memories of the activists who challenged the everyday racism present in the 1970s, and whose contributions have helped to create modern Britain. The politics they practised was not learnt through books, but through everyday lived experiences, and through an understanding of their own personal histories of migration and its relationship to colonialism. Their activities have left a lasting legacy on British politics, art and culture.

Through oral histories, timelines, images and references for further reading, we chart the journey of anti-racism from 1919 to 1976, making this a useful resource for students, teachers, and others wanting to learn about the resistance to racism in Britain.

Edited by Suresh Grover and Jagdish Patel, with contributions by Harsha Ahyave, Gautam Appa, Jenny Bourne, Avtar Brah, Gurinder Chadha, Karamjit Chaggar, Cecil Gutzmore, Jacqueline Jenkinson, Gus John, Balraj Purewal, Harsh Punja, Stafford Scott, and Ambalavaner Sivanandan

Published by The Monitoring Group
First published 2017
ISBN: 978-0-9576974-4-7
Printed by Russell Press

About the Speakers:

Darshna Soni is the Home Affairs Correspondent at Channel 4 News. She has covered many important national stories over the past 20 years. Some recent stories include racial disparity across the UK, Grenfell Tower, the far right and anti-terrorism.

Jagdish Patel is a researcher and photographer. He is currently working with the Monitoring Group researching post Brexit Racism. He writes for various publications, and works on various photo commissions. He is also a member of Primary studios, Nottingham.

Pushkar Lail arrived in Nottingham in the late 1960s. He was formerly the head of the Indian Workers Association (GB) in Nottingham. The work of the IWA (GB) both locally and nationally was crucial in the struggle against racism and included anti-racism campaigning, industrial action, social work within immigrant communities, and film shows. He was one of the founders of the Indian Community Centre Association in Nottingham, and is still active in many local issues.

Roger Tanner has lived in Nottingham for nearly 50 years and was formerly a Headteacher at a local school. He has been active in local politics for all this time, and started by taking part in anti-colour bar campaigns during the 1960s, and this interest continues to the present. He is especially interested in the heritage of struggles by ordinary people as they fought for the vote, for better living and working conditions and for a fairer society and his exhibition about the Pentrich Revolution is showing at the National Justice Gallery in Nottingham.

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