Black History Month 2018

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To celebrate Black History Month 2018, our academics and Professional Services staff were invited to post an image of a BME woman important to their research or that they find inspirational on the outside of their door. 

History Taught Programmes Office: Nichelle Nichols was one of the first black women featured in a major television series not portraying a servant; her prominent supporting role as bridge officer was unprecedented.

Dr Daniel Whittingham (Lecturer in the History of Warfare and Conflict): Sabiha Gokcen (1913-2001) was a Turkish aviator and the first woman to be a combat pilot.

Dr Mo Moulton (Lecturer in the history of race and empire): Sylvia Ray Rivera and Marsha P. Johnson were American activists who founded STAR: Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries. They were involved in the Stonewall riots of 1969 and focused on issues related to homelessness.

Professor Matt Houlbrook (Professor of Cultural History, Head of Department of History): Una Marson (1905-1965) Jamaican anti-racist and feminist activist, prolific writer and BBC broadcaster. The Kittens’ ‘The Black Man’s Cafe’ (1921-1927).

Dr Zoe Thomas (Lecturer in the History of 19th Century Britain and the Wider World): Fanny Eaton (1835-1924) housecleaner, cook, dressmaker and model for the Pre-Raphaelites such as Dante Gabriel Rosetti, who described her in a letter of August 1865 as “having a very fine head and figure – a good deal of Janey” – an allusion to his muse and mistress Jane Morris.

Dr Tom Cutterham (Lecturer in United States History) and Dr Katherine Smoak (Marie Curie Fellow): Phillis Wheatley (c.1753-1784)  the first published African-American female poet.

Dr Rachel Canty (Operations Manager): Toni Morrison award winning novelist, essayist, editor, teacher, and professor emeritus at Princeton University.

Dr Niall Livingstone (Senior Lecturer in Classics): Bell Hooks, inspirational feminist thinker and writer and Sojourner Truth (c.1797-1883) pioneer of women’s rights & human rights – and the indivisibility of the two. Campaigner against slavery and for freedom.

Dr Rob Waters (Lecturer in Modern British History): Jessica Huntley was active in the anti-colonial movement in Bagotstown, British Guiana where she was born (1927), and then later in the movement for Black Power in Britain.

Dr Kate Skinner (Senior Lecturer in the History of Africa and its Diasporas): Annie Jiagge (1918-1996) was the principal drafter of the Declaration on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women. First Ghanian woman lawyer, first woman judge in the Commonwealth and Ghana’s representative on the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (1962).

Dr Insa Nolte (Reader in African Studies, Head of Department of African Studies and Anthropology): Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti (1900-1978) teacher, adult educator, political campaigner, and women’s rights activist in colonial and postcolonial (southwest) Nigeria.

Dr Simon Jackson (Lecturer in Modern Middle Eastern History
Director, Centre for Modern and Contemporary History): Gerty Archimede (1909-1980) Guadeloupean, communist politician, lawyer, feminist and activist. Gerty was the first woman to become a barrister at the Bar in Guadeloupe, first woman to become a member of the French parliament representing Guadeloupe (1946). Founder of the Union of Guadeloupian Woman (1958). Sheltered Angela Davis in Guadeloupe in the late 1960s when she was pursued by the FBI.

Dr Simon Yarrow (Senior Lecturer in Medieval History): SS Perpetua and Felicitas were Christian martyrs who lived during the early persecution of the Church in Africa. Revered Ethiopian religious leader Walatta Petros (1592-1642), led a nonviolent movement against European proto-colonialism in Ethiopia in a successful fight to retain African Christian beliefs.

Dr Courtney Campbell (Lecturer in Latin American History): Dr Michell Chresfield, Lecturer in United States History at the University of Birmingham is a historian of race, social science and medicine in twentieth century America. Dr Sadiah Qureshi, Senior Lecturer in Modern History at the University of Birmingham researches the cultural history of race and science and empire in the modern world.

Dr Roger White (Senior Lecturer in Archaeology): Albertina Sisulu (1918-2011) was a political activist and nurse and one of the most important leaders of anti-Apartheid resistance in South Africa. She is often referred to as the ‘Mother of the Nation’.

Professor Elaine Fulton (Professor of History Education, Deputy Director of Education): Emma Clarke, first British black female footballer. She made her debut in Crouch End, north London, on 23 March 1895.

Josh Allen (Research Development Officer): Angela Davis is an American political activist, academic, and author.

Jodie Neville (Student Experience Officer): Maya Angelou (1928-2014) was a poet, singer, memoirist, and civil rights activist. Notable works include ‘I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings’ and ‘And Still I Rise’.