Black and British

Black and British Book Review History Children.jpg

Black History is still rarely covered in the school curriculum (other than slavery) so as parents we try and supplement our children’s education with stories, museum visits, documentaries and books, that teach them about this history.

Our children are lucky to be growing up within a mix of cultures. My husband is from Africa, my parents from the Caribbean and Latin America. The histories of these cultures is so rich, it would be a shame to never learn about it.

One resource that has been helpful to use as a starting point has been BLACK AND BRITISH (affiliate link) by award winning historian David Olusoga. It’s a shorter version of the much longer adult book, Black and British: A Forgotten History.

Black and British delves into 1800 years of Black British history: from the Roman Africans who guarded Hadrian’s Wall, to Windrush bringing West Indians to Britain, right through to the present day.

One fact we hadn’t realised is that people in the West Indies had been taught that Britain was the ‘mother country’ of the Empire, so when deciding to come here to help rebuild after the war, many considered it coming home. The headline in the London Evening Standard even greeted them with, ‘Welcome home’. It’s ironic since it wasn’t long before they were being told to ‘go back where you came from’ and to ‘go home’. To this day, it’s still a slur used to other many immigrants that settled in the UK no matter how long ago we arrived here or whether we were born here.

If you’re looking for a comprehensive introduction to Black British history, no matter your background or age, this is a great book to start with.