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The night of 22 to 23 August 1791, in Santo Domingo (today Haiti and the Dominican Republic) saw the beginning of the uprising that would play a crucial role in the abolition of the transatlantic slave trade.

It is against this background that the International Day for the Remembrance of the Slave Trade and its Abolition is commemorated on 23 August each year.

Be Inspired

Words that can change your world

It is not light that we need, but fire; it is not the gentle shower, but thunder. We need the storm, the whirlwind, and the earthquake.

Frederick Douglass

Words, Rhythm, Harmony
Poetry new & old
I Was Born to be Free
By Kenneth Williams
I was born to be free without these shackles or chains 
To speak my mothers tongue without prejudice or restraint.
I was born to be free from a boy to a man. without
Being controlled beaten or wiped by the wicked
Masters hand. I was born to be free so I should not have
To live my life in constant hurt fear or pain. and be robbed
From my native land never to see my mother or father
And siblings ever again. 

Spotlight on ...
UCL Legacies of British Slavery Owners

Above: John Bull (the British public) having £20 million removed from his pocket by a Whig (the British slave owners).

Ground-breaking research carried out at UCL’s Centre for the Study of the Legacies of British Slave-ownership has instigated a high-profile public debate about British slave-ownership – finding that it was of far greater significance to metropolitan Britain's economy, society, polity and culture than has previously been recognised.

Listen to a talk given by Catherine Hall, project principle investigator, at the Museum of London Docklands

Visit the Centre for the Study of the Legacies of the British Slave Trade website. 
Food Lovers
Recipes from the sun-kissed lands
High on the Hog: How African American Cuisine Transformed America
In this interesting docuseries food writer Stephen Satterfield traces the origins of African-American cuisine, tracing its through lines from Africa to Texas.

"Did you know?"

Interesting Facts
The Slavery Abolition Act 1833 
Long Title: An Act for the Abolition of Slavery throughout the British Colonies; for promoting the Industry of the manumitted Slaves; and for compensating the Persons hitherto entitled to the Services of such Slaves.

This Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom expanded the jurisdiction of the Slave Trade Act 1807, which made the purchase of slaves but not slavery itself illegal, and made the purchase or ownership of slaves illegal within the British Empire. However, this only applied to the Caribbean, Mauritius and the Cape Colonies. The Territories in the Possession of the East India Company", Ceylon (now Sri Lanka), and Saint Helena were not included in the Act. 

Slaves were not freed immediately and were required to work for four to six years as 'apprentices' so as to 'learn' how to labour. the British naval forces also 'liberated' several Africans who were being transported to the colonies by Spanish Portuguese and French ships. These so called liberated Africans were then 'recruited' as   indentured servants.  

The British government borrowed £20 million to compensate slave owners, which amounted to a massive 40 percent of the Treasury’s annual income or about 5 percent of British GDP equivalent to approximately £17 billion in todays money. The loan was one of the largest in history. 

It was not until 2015 that British taxpayers finished 'paying off' the debt which the British government incurred in order to compensate British slave owners.


Keep Exploring
Read , Watch, Listen


Britain's Slave Empire
James Walvin

Renowned historian, Jame Walvin, describes the history of how the 'Africa Trade' formed the backbone of the British Empire. This book retells the story of how the international commodity market in Africans operated, how transportation of millions of Africans over thousands of miles developed and how the experience affected slaves both in bondage and then in freedom.

Capitalism & Slavery
Eric Williams

Slavery helped finance the Industrial Revolution in England. Plantation owners, shipbuilders, and merchants connected with the slave trade accumulated vast fortunes that established banks and heavy industry in Europe and expanded the reach of capitalism worldwide... Published in 1944...  Williams's study of the role of slavery in financing the Industrial Revolution refuted traditional ideas of economic and moral progress and firmly established the centrality of the African slave trade in European economic development. 
Britain's Forgotten Slaves
How Britain as we know it was built on the profits of slavery, with abolition involving the shocking decision to compensate slave owners for their loss of 'property'.
Enslaved with Samuel L Jackson
What happened to the 12 million Africans stolen from their homes? Piecing together the untold story of the trans-Atlantic slave trade, a global business that thrived for centuries.

Britain’s Slave Owner Compensation Loan, reparations and tax havenry
Hear Naomi Fowler and John Christensen discussing this research in edition 102 of the Taxcast part one of a two part podcast discussing how tax justice can help address systemic racism. 

What's On
News & Events

Museum of London Docklands 
London, Sugar and Slavery Gallery

Discover how the trade in enslaved Africans and sugar shaped London

The museum’s building is central to this story. It was built at the time of the transatlantic slave trade, to store the sugar from the West Indian plantations where enslaved men, women and children worked.

This month's issue was compiled by
Terrie Fiawoo from ICH Population, Policy & Practice Research &  Teaching Department
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