Working on a project which explores representation and diversity within cultural institutions, I was working with 3 black artists. None of them knew what the other had said in their talk or workshop but interestingly, all three mentioned the 1981 riots as a pivotal point in history.

Not only was that interesting in itself - though predictable perhaps given they are all a similar age - of the young people on the course, the only one who had heard of the 1981 riots was the only person of African Caribbean descent. That fundamentally important, pivotal moment in recent British history for non-white Brits (esp the black and asian communities) apparently has not entered maintstream history or consciousness at all.

There is a quote that comes to mind by Richard Wright that I read in a Salman Rushdie essay - "Black and white Americans were engaged in a war over the nature of reality. Their descriptions [are] incompatible."

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