Document Actions

Education, Power and Social Change Annual Lecture: Racism, Stigma and Self-Discovery: the ‘Brown Babies’ of World War II

Starts 07 June 2017 - 18:00
Finishes 07 June 2017 - 19:30
Venue Malet Street Room B33, London, WC1E 7HX
Booking details
Free entry; booking required
Add to calendar

Event description

Racism, Stigma and Self-Discovery: the ‘Brown Babies’ of World War 11

Prof Lucy Bland, Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge

 Of the 3 million US serviceman who passed through Britain during World War 11, up to 10% were African-American. Many of these black GIs had relationships with local women, resulting in the birth of an estimated 2,000 mixed-race babies. These children were subjected both to the stigma of illegitimacy (for the US army forbade marriage between black GIs and white British women) and racism in what was then a very white country.

Whether kept by mother or grandmothers, or sent to children’s homes, the ‘brown babies’, as the African-American press termed them, generally grew up knowing next to nothing about their fathers, thereby experiencing an acute sense of lack. Now in their early 70s, many have subsequently searched for their fathers and their American relatives. Drawing on oral history (interviews with 38 ‘brown babies’) the talk will explore their journey from frequently difficult childhoods to self-discovery and pride in their heritage.

Contact name
December 2017
Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
31