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Professor Hakim Adi celebrates life’s work of ‘unsung hero’ Alice Kinloch for Black History Month

South African activist Alice Kinloch was influential across British history but remains one of the “frequently-forgotten” figures of Black History Month, says University of Chichester Professor Hakim Adi.

Little is known about the equal-rights campaigner, writes Prof Adi in the Guardian newspaper, other than that she came to Britain in the late 1890s, lectured across the country on the plight of her countrymen and helped found the renowned African Association, although that is usually credited to a man, Henry Sylvester-Williams.

Prof Hakim Adi was the UK’s first history professor of African heritage, and is an influential writer on the history of Africa and the African diaspora in the twentieth century.

Writing in the Guardian, he said: “Kinloch has been written out of history, and not much is known about her – I have never even seen a picture of her – but she played a leading role at a time when few African women were active in politics in Britain or elsewhere.

“The African Association convened the First Pan-African Conference, which was held in London in 1900. This was the first major event to use the term pan-African and to gather people from all over Africa and the diaspora to speak with one voice.”

The Guardian article, co-authored by Prof Adi, celebrates the unsung heroes and of Black History Month and events of the African diaspora from the UK’s leading black academics and cultural commentators.

Professor Adi now leads on the University of Chichester’s popular MRes degree The History of African and the African Diaspora. The programme, which is the first of its kind to be delivered completely online, sees students examine the historical relationships between Africa and its diaspora throughout the last two hundred years.

His book, Pan-Africanism: A History, is the very first survey the 21st century of the Pan-African movement, covering key events and historical figures, such as Marcus Garvey and Malcolm X, and cultural expressions including the Afro hairstyle and the music of Bob Marley.

Read the Guardian article in full at www.theguardian.com/world/2019/oct/08/from-emperors-to-inventors-the-unsung-heroes-to-celebrate-in-black-history-month.

For more about Professor Hakim Adi and his pioneering research and teaching about Pan-Africanism go to www.chi.ac.uk/staff/professor-hakim-adi.