Afro Solo UK E-Book


The book is only available in download format we hope to secure funding for hard print copies in 2015 .

Afro Solo UK should be essential reading for anyone interested in the African Diaspora or post-war migration to the UK. It’s a rich compilation of interconnected life stories and photographs, mainly narrated by the children of African migrants who came to Britain and mixed with other migrants from Scotland, Ireland, Wales and parts of Europe to create an astonishingly talented and energetic multiracial and multicultural generation. Many stories narrate the frustration of fractured family histories, but there is also huge pride, nostalgia, curiosity and wonderment. Despite uneasy memories of prejudice and suspicion, there is a prevailing sense of gratitude to those early pioneers; a realisation that what connects us is love, the tenderness and solidarity of human concern. A vivid social history of Manchester, this book reminds us that a city is not just made up of its architecture, industry and structures of governance, but can be conceived as constituted of global journeys that in turn become a web of interlocking narratives – a dynamic propelled by language itself. Afro Solo helps us to understand the complex reality of a city as a nexus of built space, commerce, individual and social relations, change, memory, hope and aspiration. It’s a terrific read: moving, engaging and never less than messily human..
Professor Graham Mort, Centre for Transcultural Writing and Research, Lancaster University, UK.

Before the Windrush and not directly connected to Britain’s involvement in the Slave Trade a whole group of black migrants settled in Britain from West Africa. This project brings together oral narratives from the sons and daughters of these mainly African men who came to the North of England as seamen, stowaways, students, engineers, stokers, tailors, fighters in Britain’s wars, dancers and musicians. Many ended up in Manchester and were key players in the 1945 Pan-African Congress held there, providing the community base without which it would not have been nearly as effective. The narratives tell of strict, usually mixed-race upbringings where racism was a constant barrier to uplift. The tight-knit community finds its distinctive voice here with discussion of foodways, entrepreneurialism, clubbing, musicking and the preservation of African customs miles from home. Afro Solo UK redefines ideas of blackness in British culture, by foregrounding these hitherto marginalised voices. Vivid and entertaining it is essential reading for any scholar of the African diaspora and indeed for any layperson who wants to understand the complexity of cultures that contribute to the making of Black Britain which is not as simple a story as hitherto understood.
Professor Alan Rice University of Central Lancashire

Congratulations on the Book, Many thanks for creating a wonderful tribute to, All our Families. All the stories are different, yet All the stories are the Same. I no longer feel alone about My memories, as I now know that others shared the same experience's.
Thanks for a job well done.
Les Johnson

...Extremely well put together and fascinating for generations to come. Joy Onyejiako The Brunei Gallery

Love this..especially the stories from people whom I know and love. Thank you. Diane Curry OBE CEO POPS

Such wonderful, enriching visual narratives, conveying all the warmth, pain, and love of home.Trica Danielle Keaton Associate Professor of African American and Diaspora Studies Vanderbilt University

Excellent stuff. A valuable addition to the diaspora archives. Yet another 'world' revealed within the 'UK world' Thanks largely to the reach and capacity of the cybernetic world —and much diligent and imaginative work by you and your programme.
Quite wonderful Congratulations
. Professor Michael Vickers