The team at Wales Art Review, with the help and guidance of our readers, have been collating key works, commentaries and resources with a focus on the troubling historical and modern story of racism in Wales. If you’re Welsh, live in Wales, or are just interested in the subject, here is some essential reading/viewing. However, this is by no means comprehensive, so if you’d like to inform us of any historical or modern day events or people we should be aware of, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Research & Data
Changing face of Wales: Is racial prejudice alive and kicking? By BBC Wales Home Affairs Correspondent, Jenny Rees
Should society memorialise a slave trader? By Rosemary L Caldicott
“Can we live together? Wales & the multicultural question” by Charlotte Williams in the Transactions of the Honourable Society of Cymmrodorion
Slavery and the Cambrian connection by Helen Morgan for Focus Magazines
Welsh copper industry used slaves after abolition by Selma Chalabi, BBC Wales News online
BME communities have been overlooked in conversations about Wales and Brexit by Yasmin Begum, Nation Cymru
The South Wales Race Riots of 1919: a documentary postscript by Neil Evans
At Wales Arts Review, we also have a number of articles that may be of interest, including:
Remembering the Newport Race Riots of 1919 by Shaheen Sutton
Whatever Happened to the Black Boy of Killay? by Darren Chetty
The Wales Window of Alabama by Cerith Mathias
Proletarian Poetry Guest Post: ‘Sod’ em and tomorrow ‘ by Des Mannay
Slave Wales, Chris Evans
This book looks at Slave Wales between 1660 and 1850. It casts light on episodes such as Welsh involvement with slave-based copper mining in 19th-century Cuba.
A Tolerant Nation? Revisiting Ethnic Diversity in a Devolved Wales, Charlotte Evans, Neil Evans, Paul O’Leary
It provides analyses of the changing patterns of immigration and their reception including hostile and violent acts. It also considers the way in which Welsh attitudes to minorities have been shaped in the past through the activity of missionaries in the British Empire, and how these have permeated literary perceptions of Wales.
Sugar and Slate, Charlotte Williams
Sugar and Slate tells the fascinating story of Charlotte’s journey of self-discovery, from the small north Wales town of her birth to Africa, the Caribbean and back to Wales. What begins as a journey becomes a remarkable confrontation with herself and with the idea of Wales and Welshness.
The Tiger Bay Story, Neil M. C. Sinclair
The first book to provide an insider’s view of life in old Tiger Bay. Drawing on personal memories, family history and interviews with old-timers, it is a passionate exploration of an aspect of Welsh heritage that is all too frequently overlooked.
Cymru Ddu / Black Wales, Alun Llwyd
This book examines in detail the relationship between the white Welsh and the black people who have lived in Wales as a result of immigration and birth. How tolerant has Wales been of its newcomers and brown-skinned citizens? Why were there race riots in 1919?
For more reading, a comprehensive reading list from the Open-Access Sylabbus covering the 1919 Race Riots in Wales can be found here.
Fitted in; The Cardiff 3 and the Lynette White Enquiry, Satish Sekar
This book is an account of the murder enquiry of a 20-year-old prostitute, Lynette White. Three black men were charged with her murder but the case was later reopened and Satish Sekar explores the new evidence about the case.
Endangered Tiger, a Community Under Threat, Neil M.C. Sinclair
Approximately one square mile in size, Tiger Bay and the Docks comprises of a rich, diverse, multi-ethnic community that lacks many of the problems often associated with melting-pots such as this that exist around the world. Built on the wealth of slavery, iron, and coal, the workers and families in this area have brought great prosperity to Cardiff. Combining personal and family memories, interviews and historical research, Sinclair delves behind the headlines and offers a view of Cardiff’s history not taught in schools.
Bloody Valentine, a Killing in Cardiff, John Williams
The true story of Lynette White, a 19 year old Cardiff prostitute who was hacked to death on St Valentine’s Day 1988. The book details the conviction of the three men accused of the crime, their lengthy trial, appeal and eventual release
After Many a Summer – the changing face of Tiger Bay, directed by Harley Jones and Chris Bellinger
[S4C is repeating a series on black people in Wales and I’m just trying to get confirmation if they’ll be available on iplayer]
Critically Speaking – Difficult conversations about the arts and culture in Wales with discussion about the relationship between race and privilege.
Efa Lois (@efalois) is an illustrator with a focus on flowers, myths and Welsh culture and has been listing key events and individuals that we Welsh people should read, discuss and teach others about. Lists in English and Welsh.
Yasmin Begum (@punkistani93) is a writer from Cardiff and an active commentator on race issues in Wales. She has shared a vast number of resources on her Twitter page, as well as a link to UCL’s database of estates relating to British slave ownership.
Sara Huws (@sara_Huws) on Twitter is the co-founder of the East End Women’s Museum and a presenter on S4C. She regularly shares resources from a UK-wide and Wales-specific standpoint.
Marvin Thompson (@marvinpoet) teaches English in south Wales, has an MA in Creative Writing and was one of three poets selected by Nine Arches Press for the Primers 2 mentoring scheme. He recently shared a poem he penned, asking why there’s a plaque for a slave trader in Brecon.
Why is there a plaque for a slave trader in Brecon, south Wales? #BlackLivesMatterUK
— Marvin Poet 🇬🇧🇯🇲 (@MarvinPoet) June 7, 2020
Dylan Foster Evans (@DiferionDFE) is Head of School, School of Welsh at Cardiff University and provides valuable insight into many of the historical events relating to, and the people involved in Wales’ slavery past.
Ifan Morgan Jones’ thread on problematic statues / monuments / street and square names in Wales?
Also on Twitter, @tomm_robertss’ thread on Tiger Bay is worth a read
THREAD: Cardiff Bay is a product of racism, and is a bastion of white supremacy in the Built Environment. If you live, visit and enjoy the Bay it’s important to understand this racism in detail whilst enjoying and living in this space… 1/16 pic.twitter.com/zBWtnAEPrO
— Tom (@tomm_robertss) June 5, 2020
Hansh S4C (@hansh o Twitter) is a digital platform for comedy, music and fresh voices. They have recently, and in the past, featured clips in Welsh of young people discussing their experiences of being black in Wales.
West Africa in Wales is a Facebook group aiming to rebuild the connections between Africa and Wales/UK. They are interested in your memories, photographs and stories that you wish to share and with permission will use the information in the Heritage workshops within the community. They also offer a recording service for anyone who holds information and images that they wish to be preserved for future generations and welcome any further African connections to Britain that you may have.
Community Groups & Organisations
@eystwales supports BME young people, families & individuals. Set up to fill a gap in provision, expanded to meet needs of BME people, families, individuals including refugees, asylum-seekers in Wales. Learn about projects and donate here
@OasisCDF helps refugees and asylum seekers in Cardiff. Their main aim is to promote integration within their local community & for Oasis itself to learn and be inspired by cultures and traditions they’re exposed to daily. Make a donation and volunteer here.
@BAWSO provides services across Wales including the provision of temporary accommodation for those affected/at risk of domestic abuse/all forms of violence (e.g. female genital mutilation, forced marriage, honour based violence, human trafficking, modern slavery). Donate here.
THE PRIVILEGE CAFE
BLACK HISTORY MONTH WALES
@BHMWales acknowledges the contributions made by African Diaspora people to local, national and world history and culture by delivering an informative educational and celebratory programme annually around the month of October.