My study examines the Black Power movement in Britain during the 1960s–70s and how it interacted with the wider radical left, with a regional focus on the Midlands area. The study investigates two unexplored aspects of British Black Power, where it intersected with ‘traditional’ socialist politics: its role in the post-war resurgence of industrial militancy, and in the anti-fascist movement against the National Front. The PhD dislodges the ‘methodological whiteness’ (Bhambra, 2017) of prevailing accounts of the extra-parliamentary left in Britain, by charting the responses of Black radicals to racialised issues of state repression, workplace exploitation and right-wing extremism.
While British Black Power is often assumed to be a primarily American import, the study examines how the movement was also shaped by distinctive patterns of anti-colonialism developed within the imperial metropole. The PhD foregrounds how Black radicals in post-war Britain challenged the Eurocentrism of the left-wing mainstream, by reviving the ‘subaltern cosmopolitanism’ (Featherstone, 2012) of earlier metropolitan anti-imperialists like Claudia Jones and Shapurji Saklatvala.