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Internationalism Panel

Saturday 1 June 2019

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Photograph, crowd at Walter Rodney funeral and protest, Georgetown, Guyana (1980). Huntley Archives, London Metropolitan Archives. Reference LMA/4463/B/13/06/001.

Chloe Alexander; Imruh Bakari and Stella Dadzie

This panel will map the historical processes of internationalism and use this to think about what a viable left strategy looks like today, in dealing with the political and institutional crisis we face, with changing imperialist forces. 

Chloe Alexander will discuss James Connolly: Scotland, Ireland and Marxist Internationalism and argue that Connolly was one of the foremost Marxist Internationalists of his time and that his Irish nationalism was a direct and necessary product of his Socialist-Internationalism. Imruh Bakari will introduce his poetry and films and make the vital case for the importance of artistic and cultural practices in communicating anti-imperialist politics, including pan-Africanism in the diaspora. Stella Dadzie will introduce the politics of Black Women’s Movement and her book The Heart of Race, and how necessary their collective anti-colonial fight was in confronting racism, capitalism and sexism.


Chloe Alexander is a researcher into radical labour links between Ireland and Scotland. She completed her PhD on James Connolly and the Internationalism of the Scottish and Irish Labour Movements (1880 – 1916).

Imruh Bakari is a filmmaker, writer and creative industries consultant. He studied at Bradford College of Art, and is a graduate of the National Film & Television School, Beaconsfield. He also completed postgraduate studies at Goldsmiths College, University of London. He teaches on the BA (Hons) Film Studies and BA (Hons) Film Production programmes.

From 1999-2004 he was Festival Director of Zanzibar International Film Festival (ZIFF), and is a founder/director of Tanzania Screenwriters Forum. He was a founder/director of Ceddo, the film and video production and training organization in London (1982-93). He is a former member (2012-15) of the Advisory Council of the Pan-African Federation of Filmmakers (FEPACI); and currently a member Tanzania Independent Producers Association (TAIPA), and the Editorial Board of the Journal of African Cinemas.

His professional work includes a number of film and television credits, which include Riots and Rumours of Riots, Street Warriors, The Mark of the Hand, Blue Notes and Exiled Voices and African Tales.. In 2013 he received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Afrika Filmfestival in Leuven, Belgium for his work in African Cinema.

Stella Dadzie is a published writer and historian, best known for The Heart of the Race: Black Women’s lives in Britain, (co-authored with Beverly Bryan and Suzanne Scafe) which won the 1985 Martin Luther King Award for Literature and has been republished by Verso in July 2018 as a feminist classic.  A founder-member of OWAAD (Organisation of Women of African & Asian Descent) in the late seventies, she was recently described as one of the ‘grandmothers’ of black feminism.

Her career as a writer and education activist spans over 40 years, during which time she has written numerous publications and resources aimed at promoting an inclusive curriculum and good practice with black adult learners and other minorities, as well as challenging other institutional inequalities.  In November 2003, she received the NBM Award for Outstanding Contributions to Race Equality in Further Education.

She is equally well known for her contribution to tackling youth racism and working with racist perpetrators and was a key contributor to the development of anti-racist strategies with schools, education and youth services. She was also closely involved with the work of the Commission for Black Staff in Further Education in the early 2000s,, authoring three publications for them on the recruitment, progression and retention of black staff and other under-represented minorities.  She  has worked to promote good practice in Germany, Slovenia, Poland, Norway, South Africa, the USA, Hong Kong and Malaysia.

She appeared in And Still I Rise, a documentary exploring the social and historical origins of stereotypes of African women and was also a guest of Germaine Greer on her BBC2 discussion programme The Last Word.  More recently, she was a Commissioner on the Mayor’s Commission for African and Asian Heritage, which aimed to promote visible diversity across London’s major heritage organisations.