British African Caribbean (or Afro-Caribbean) people are residents of the United Kingdom who are of West Indian background and whose ancestors were primarily indigenous to Africa. As immigration to the United Kingdomfrom Africa increased in the 1990s, Sony PCG-31211T Battery
the term has sometimes been used to include UK residents solely of African origin, or as a term to define all Black British residents, though the phrase "African and Caribbean" has more often been used to cover such a broader grouping. Sony PCG-31311T Battery
The most common and traditional use of the term African-Caribbean community is in reference to groups of residents' continuing aspects of Caribbean culture, customs and traditions in the United Kingdom.
A majority of the African-Caribbean population in the UK is of Jamaican origin; Sony PCG-51111T Battery
other notable representation is from Trinidad and Tobago, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Barbados, Grenada, Antigua and Barbuda, Saint Lucia, Dominica,Montserrat, Anguilla, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Guyana (which although located on the South Americanmainland is culturally similar to the Caribbean and was historically considered to be part of the British West Indies), and Belize. Sony PCG-81111T Battery
African-Caribbean people are present throughout the United Kingdom with by far the largest concentrations inLondon and Birmingham. Significant communities also exist in other population centres, notably Manchester,Bradford, Nottingham, Coventry, Luton, High Wycombe, Sony PCG-81311T Battery
Leicester, Bristol, Gloucester, Leeds, Huddersfield,Sheffield, Liverpool and Cardiff. In these cities, the community is traditionally associated with a particular area, such as Brixton, Harlesden, Stonebridge, London, Dalston, Sutton, London, Lewisham, Tottenham, Peckham in London, Sony VPCF138FC Battery
West Bowling and Heaton in Bradford, Chapeltown in Leeds, St. Pauls in Bristol, or Handsworth andAston in Birmingham or Moss Side in Manchester. According to the 2011 census, the largest number of African-Caribbeans are found in Croydon, south London. Sony VPCF219FC Battery
British African-Caribbeans have an extremely high rate of mixed-race relationships, and could in effect become the first UK ethnic group to "disappear". Half of all British African-Caribbean men in a relationship have partners of a different ethnic background, as do one-third of all British African-Caribbean women. Sony VPCS135EC Battery
As of the 2011 census, over 1 million people are of African-Caribbean origin in total.
From the 16th century to the 19th century, enslaved Africans were shipped by European slave traders to British colonies in the Caribbean and British North America, as well as French, Dutch, Danish, Spanish, and Portuguese colonies. Sony VPCS136EC Battery
New Worldslavery was originally focused on the extraction of gold and other precious raw materials. Africans were then later set to work on the vast cotton, tobacco and sugar plantations in the Americas for the economic benefit of these colonial powers and their plantocracy. Sony VPCS138EC Battery
One impact of the American Revolution was the differing historical development of African-American and African-Caribbean people. There are records of small communities in the ports of Cardiff, Liverpool, London and South Shieldsdating back to the mid-18th century. Sony VPCS139GC Battery
These communities were formed by freed slaves following the abolition of slavery.Typical occupations of the early migrants were footmen or coachmen.
The growing Caribbean presence in the British military led to approximately 15,000 migrants arriving in the North-West of England around the time of the First World War to work in munitions factories. Sony VPCYA15EC Battery
The Jamaican poet and communist activist, Claude McKay came to England following the First World War and became the firstBlack British journalist, writing for the Workers' Dreadnought.
In February 1941 345 West Indian workers were brought to work in and around Liverpool. They were generally better skilled than the local Black British. Sony VPCYA16EC Battery
There was also some tension between them and West Africans who had settled in the area.
Since World War II many African-Caribbean people migrated to North America and Europe, especially to the United States,Canada, the UK, France, and the Netherlands. Sony VPCYA25EC Battery
As a result of the losses during the war, the British government began to encourage mass immigration from the countries of the British Empire and Commonwealth to fill shortages in the labour market. The 1948 British Nationality Act gave British citizenship to all people living in Commonwealth countries, Sony VPCYA26EC Battery
and full rights of entry and settlement in Britain. Many West Indians were attracted by better prospects in what was often referred to as the mother country.
The ship MV Empire Windrush brought the first group of 492 immigrants to Tilbury nearLondon on 22 June 1948. Sony VPCYB15JC Battery
The Windrush was en route from Australia to England via theAtlantic, docking in Kingston, Jamaica. An advertisement had appeared in a Jamaican newspaper offering cheap transport on the ship for anybody who wanted to come and work in the UK. The arrivals were temporarily housed in the Clapham South deep shelter in southwest London less than a mile away from Coldharbour Lane in Brixton. Sony VPCYA17GH/R Battery
Many only intended to stay in Britain for a few years, and although a number returned to the Caribbean to rejoin the RAF, the majority remained to settle permanently. The arrival of the passengers has become an important landmark in the history of modern Britain, Sony VPCCW2S8E/W Battery
and the image of West Indians filing off its gangplank has come to symbolise the beginning of modern British multicultural society. See Windrush image "here"..
There was plenty of work in post-war Britain and industries such as British Rail, theNational Health Service and public transport recruited almost exclusively from Jamaica and Barbados. Sony VPCCW2Z1E/B Battery
Though Afro-Caribbeans were encouraged to journey to Britain via immigration campaigns created by successive British governments, many new arrivals were to endure prejudice, intolerance and extreme racism from sectors of indigenous British society. Sony VPCY11S1E Battery
This experience was to mark African-Caribbeans' relations with the wider community over a long period. Early African-Caribbean immigrants found private employment and housing denied to them on the basis of race. Trade unions would often not help African-Caribbean workers and some pubs, Sony VPCY11S1E/S Battery
clubs, dance halls and churches would bar black people from entering. Housing was in short supply following the wartime bombing, and the shortage led to some of the first clashes with the established white community. Clashes continued and worsened into the 1950s, and riots erupted in cities including London, Birmingham and Nottingham. Sony VPCW1 Battery
In 1958, attacks in the London area of Notting Hill by white youths marred relations with West Indian residents, leading to the creation of the annual Notting Hill Carnival, which was initiated in 1959 as a positive response by the Caribbean community. Sony VPCW1E8R/BU Battery
Some of the racism and intolerance was stoked by explicitly fascist or anti-immigration movements including Oswald Mosley's Union Movement, theLeague of Empire Loyalists, the White Defence League, the National Labour Party and others. Influenced by this kind of propaganda, gangs of Teddy Boys would often attack blacks in London. Sony VPCY11AGJ Battery
In 1962, Britain passed the Commonwealth Immigrants Act restricting the entry of immigrants, and by 1972 only holders of work permits, or people with parents or grandparents born in the UK, could gain entry - effectively stemming most Caribbean immigration. Sony VPCY11AHJ Battery
Despite the restrictive measures, an entire generation of Britons with African-Caribbean heritage now existed, contributing to British society in virtually every field. The number of British persons born in the West Indies had increased from 15,000 in 1951 to 172,000 in 1961 to 304,000 in 1981. Sony VPCY11AVJ Battery
The total population of persons of West Indian heritage by 1981 was between 500,000 and 550,000, depending upon the official source used.
The 1970s and 1980s were decades of comparative turbulence in wider British society; Sony VPCY11M1E Battery
industrial disputes preceded a period of deep recession and widespread unemployment which seriously affected the economically less prosperous African-Caribbean community.Recession[›] Societal racism, discrimination, poverty, powerlessness and oppressive policing sparked a series of riots in areas with substantial African-Caribbean populations. Sony VPCY11S1E Battery
These "uprisings" (as they were described by some in the community) took place in St Pauls in 1980, Brixton, Toxteth and Moss Side in 1981, St Pauls again in 1982, Notting Hill Gatein 1982, Toxteth in 1982, and Handsworth, Brixton and Tottenham in 1985. Sony VPCY11V9E Battery
The riots had a profoundly unsettling effect on local residents, and led the then Home Secretary William Whitelaw to commission the Scarman report to address the root causes of the disturbances. The report identified both "racial discrimination" and a "racial disadvantage" in Britain, Sony VPCY11V9E/S Battery
concluding that urgent action was needed to prevent these issues becoming an "endemic, ineradicable disease threatening the very survival of our society". The era saw an increase in attacks on Black people by white people. The Joint Campaign Against Racism committee reported that there had been more than 20,000 attacks on non-indigenous Britons including Britons of Asian origin during 1985. Sony VPCY219FJ/S Battery
The police response to the 1993 murder of black teenager Stephen Lawrence led to outcry and calls to investigate police conduct. The ensuing government inquiry, the Macpherson Report, concluded that there was institutional racism in the London Metropolitan Police Service. Sony VPCY21AFJ Battery
Afro-Caribbeans have exhibited an increasing association with gun-crime, heightened by high profile murders, such as that of two young black women shot by black assailants outside a Birmingham hair salon in 2003. Several media outlets blamed a “gangster rap culture”, Sony VPCY21AGJ Battery
though Assistant Chief Constable Nick Tofiluk of the West Midlands Police believed that the use of firearms is not an Afro-Caribbean issue alone, and has been on the rise throughout British society.Tensions between African-Caribbean residents and British Asians in a number of regions have led to confrontations, Sony VPCY21AHJ Battery
notably violent disturbances in Birmingham in 2005 where groups fought and rioted over two nights. There is also evidence of tensions between African-Caribbeans and African immigrants. Sony VPCY21AVJ Battery
In 2009, 1.2% of British children under 16 were Black Caribbean and 1.1% were mixed white and black Caribbean. Among those children who were living with at least one Caribbean parent, only one in five were living with two Caribbean parents.
In the UK Census of 2001, 565,876 people classified themselves in the category 'Black Caribbean', Sony VPCY21S1E/L Battery
amounting to around 1 per cent of the total population. Of the "minority ethnic" population, which amounted to 7.9 per cent of the total UK population, Black Caribbeans accounted for 12.2 per cent. In addition, 14.6 per cent of the minority ethnic population (equivalent to 1.2 per cent of the total population) Sony VPCY21S1E/P Battery
identified as mixed race, of whom one third stated that they were of mixed white and Black Caribbean descent. In 2001, 61 per cent of the Black Caribbean group lived in London.
The Census also records respondents' countries of birth and the 2001 Census recorded 146,401 people born in Jamaica, Sony VPCY21S1E/SI Battery
21,601 from Barbados, 21,283 from Trinidad and Tobago, 20,872 from Guyana, 9,783 from Grenada, 8,265 from Saint Lucia, 7,983 from Montserrat, 7,091 from Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, 6,739 from Dominica, 6,519 from Saint Kitts and Nevis, 3,891 from Antigua and Barbuda and 498 from Anguilla. Sony VPCCW1E8R/WU Battery
In 2007, 49% of black Caribbean pupils achieved five or more GCSEs at grades A* to C. 56% of girls achieved five or more GCSEs at A*-C, with 42% of boys doing the same.
In many parts of Britain, African-Caribbean people have been recognised as being part of a distinct community. Sony VPCCW1S1E Battery
In the 1950s and 1960s community centres and associations sprung up in some British towns and cities with an aim to serve African-Caribbean populations. One such example was the African Caribbean Self Help Organisation (ACSHO), formed in 1994 in the district of Handsworthin Birmingham. Sony VGP-BPS13 Battery
These centres have often addressed issues that rise within the community, including perceived problems of police harassment and concerns about the housing of Black people, which was viewed as discriminatory during the early decades of mass immigration. Sony VAIO VGP-BPS13A/B Battery
The centres also allowed African-Caribbean peoples to socialise without risking the potential racial discrimination and aggression of "unfriendly pubs". Many of these associations appointed a Community Relations Officer whose role was to liaise between the community and wider British society including the establishment. Sony VAIO VGP-BPS13B/B Battery
Other responsibilities included arranging social events, such as festivals, carnivals and coach trips, which helped bring the communities together. Typical of present-day centres is the Afro Caribbean Millennium Centre in Birmingham, which was established with National Lottery funding to support principally Caribbean people in areas such as employment, Sony VAIO VGP-BPS13/S Battery
housing, education, immigration, and cultural issues.
Although the community does not face any official or informal restrictions on political participation, Britons of Caribbean origin are nonetheless under-represented in local and national politics. Sony VAIO VGP-BPS13A/S Battery
However there have been some successes with Diane Abbott being the first black person elected to Parliament under Labour and Linda C. Douglas being the first black person to be part of the Labour party National Executive Committee representing the later expelled Militant tendency. Sony VAIO VGP-BPS13B/S Battery
British African-West Indians have long asserted that they encounter discriminatory barriers to most middle- and higher-status occupations, as well as discrimination in hiring practices at all levels of employment. There is also considerable evidence that African-Caribbean people experience differential treatment at the hands of public officials, Sony VAIO VGP-BPS13/Q Battery
the British courts and penal system, and the police. Studies have proposed that the isolation of certain regional urban areas by financial institutions such as insurance brokers disproportionately affects the community to its detriment.
Britain's school system, despite efforts to address issues of discrimination, Sony VAIO VGP-BPS13A/Q Battery
has often been accused of racism through undermining the self-confidence of all Black children and maligning the culture of their parents. Throughout the 1950s and 1960s, a disproportionate number of Caribbean migrant children were classified as "educationally subnormal" and placed in special schools and units. Sony VAIO VGP-BPS13B/Q Battery
By the end of the 1980s, the chances of white school leavers finding employment were four times better than those of Black pupils. In 2000–01, Black pupils were three times more likely than white pupils and ten times more likely than Indian pupils to be officially excluded from school for disciplinary reasons. Sony VGP-BPS21 Battery
These chronic problems have contributed to the group being disproportionately at the lower end of the socio-economic spectrum and thus have continued to face challenging social problems into the 21st century.
African-Caribbean communities organise and participate in Caribbean Carnivals (Caribbean style carnivals) throughout the UK. Sony VGP-BPS21A Battery
The best known of these is the annual Notting Hill Carnival, attracting up to 1.5 million people from Britain and around the world, making it the largest street festival in Europe. The carnival began in 1964 as a small procession of Trinidadians in memory of festivals in their home country. Sony VGP-BPS21B Battery
Leeds West Indian Carnival is Europe's oldest West Indian carnival and now attracts around 130,000 people.
Other carnivals include the Leicester Caribbean Carnival and the Birmingham International Carnival. Sony VGP-BPS21/S Battery
The earliest Caribbean immigrants to post-war Britain found differences in diet and availability of food an uncomfortable challenge. In later years, as the community developed and food imports became more accessible to all, grocersspecialising in Caribbean produce opened in British high streets. Sony VGP-BPS21A/b Battery
Caribbean restaurants can now also be found in most areas of Britain where West Indian communities reside, serving traditional Caribbean dishes such as curried goat, fried dumplings,ackee and salt fish (the national dish of Jamaica), Pelau (the national dish of Trinidad and Tobago), Sony VGP-BPS26 Battery
(Cou-Cou and Flying Fish the national dish of Barbados), Pudding and Souse, as well as Fish Cakes from Barbados. The spices known as "jerk" and the traditional Sunday West Indian meal of rice and peas.
The best known Caribbean food brands in the UK are Jamaican Sun, Sony VGP-BPL26 Battery
Tropical Sun, Dunn's River & Grace.In March 2007 Grace foods, bought ENCO Products, owners of the Dunn's River Brand, as well as Nurishment, and the Encona Sauce Range. Tropical Sun products have been widely available in the UK for over two decades and has a sister brand,Jamaica Sun, with products sourced exclusivity from Jamaica. Sony VGP-BPS26A Battery
In the UK this is distributed by Wanis International. The Tropical Sun brand mission is "To Make Everyday a [Tropical] Sun Day." The distinctive red can of Jamaica Sun ackee was featured in Celebrity Come Dine with Mebeing used by Mica Paris. The most popular brands can now often be found in the large supermarkets; Sony VGP-BPS22 Battery
although the full range continues to be offered only by the local ethnic stores, the interest by the mainstream supermarkets reflects the wider population's interest in ethnic and more lately Afro-Caribbean foods. Sony VGP-BPL22 Battery
The influx of African-Caribbeans to the United Kingdom was accompanied by religious practices more common to the North American continent. In Britain, many African-Caribbeans continued to practice Non-conformist Protestant denominations with an Evangelical influence such as Pentecostalism and Seventh Day Baptism. Sony VGP-BPS22A Battery
African-Caribbeans have supported new churches in many areas of the country, which have grown to act as social centres for the community.Religion[›] The manner of worship in some of these churches is more akin to that of African-American practices than to traditional English Catholic or Anglican liturgy. Sony VAIO PCG-3B1M Battery
Gospel music also came to play a part in British cultural life. African-Caribbeans played a central role establishing British gospel choirs, most notably the London Community Gospel Choir.
Some British African-Caribbeans continue to practice other religious beliefs such as the Rastafari movement, which developed in Jamaica. Sony VAIO PCG-3D1M Battery
The Rastafarian belief system, associated personal symbols such as dreadlocks and cultural practices concerning cannabis have influenced British society far beyond the African-Caribbean community, being adopted by both indigenous Britons and others. Sony VAIO PCG-3G2M Battery
There are around 40,000 African-Caribbean Muslims in the United Kingdom, 30,000 of those reside in London. Muslims of African-Caribbean origins are found in British major cities and town. Some of them, especially those from African countries such as Nigeria, Sony VAIO PCG-5R1M Battery
Uganda and Sierra Leone, are more likely to be born to Muslim families, while others, particularly the Caribbean Muslims, converted to Islam in various circumstances including marriage and in prison.
English is the official language of the former British West Indies, Sony VAIO PCG-7162M Battery
therefore African-Caribbean immigrants had few communication difficulties upon arrival in Britain compared to immigrants from other regions. Nevertheless, indigenous Britons were generally unused to the distinct Caribbean dialects, Sony VAIO PCG-7181M Battery
creoles andpatois (patwah) spoken by many African-Caribbean immigrants and their descendants, which would be particularly problematic in the field of education. In a study by language and education specialist Viv Edwards, The West Indian language issue in British schools, Sony VAIO PCG-41112M Battery
language – the Creole spoken by the students – was singled out as an important factor disadvantaging Caribbean children in British schools. The study cites negative attitudes of teachers towards any non-standard variety noting that; Sony VAIO PCG-7153M Battery
"The teacher who does not or is not prepared to recognise the problems of the Creole-speaking child in a British English situation can only conclude that he is stupid when he gives either an inappropriate response or no response at all. The stereotyping process leads features of Creole to be stigmatised and to develop connotations of, amongst other things, low academic ability." Sony VAIO PCG-71312M Battery
As integration continued, African-West Indians born in Britain instinctively adopted hybrid dialects combining Caribbean and local British dialects. These dialects and accents gradually entered mainstream British vernacular, and shades of Caribbean dialects can be heard among Britons regardless of cultural origin. Sony VAIO PCG-7144M Battery
A Lancaster University study identified an emergence in certain areas of Britain of a distinctive accent which borrows heavily from Jamaican creole, lifting some words unchanged. This phenomenon, disparagingly named "Jafaican" meaning "fake Jamaican", was famously parodied by comedian Sacha Baron Cohen through his character Ali G. Sony VAIO PCG-7191L Battery
The 1970s saw the emergence of independent filmmakers such as Trinidadian-born Horace Ové, the director of Pressure, among others. London's Talawa Theatre Company was founded in the 1985 by Jamaican-born Yvonne Brewster, their first production being based on C. L. R. Sony VAIO PCG-3C1M Battery
James's historical account of the Haitian Revolution, The Black Jacobins. Since the 1980s, the Blue Mountain Theatre's productions have offered a more earthy style of populist comedy, often bringing over Jamaican artists such as Oliver Samuels. Sony VAIO PCG-3F1M Battery
While Guyanese actor Robert Adams became the first African-Caribbean dramatic actor to appear on British television on 11 May 1938 (in a production of Eugene O'Neill's play The Emperor Jones), Sony VAIO PCG-3H1M Battery
African-Caribbean entertainers were first widely popularised on British television broadcasts with the postwar resumption ofBBC television in 1946 (pre-war black entertainers on the BBC - the first in the world - had primarily been African-American stars). Sony VAIO PCG-3J1M Battery
The profile of African-Caribbean actors on television, such as Lennie James, Judith Jacob and Diane Parish, has widened substantially since 1970s shows such as Love Thy Neighbour(Rudolph Walker) and Rising Damp (Don Warrington) when their role was often to act simply as either the butt of, or foil to, racist jokes by white characters. Sony VAIO PCG-8141M Battery
The most influential programme in moving away from this formula was the 1989–94 Channel Four barbershop sitcom Desmond's, starring Norman Beaton and Carmen Munroe.
One of the biggest African-Caribbean names in comedy is Lenny Henry, Sony VAIO PCG-8161M Battery
who began his career as a stand-up comedian but whose television sketch shows, where he often caricatured Caribbean émigrés, made him popular enough to headline numerous primetime comedy shows from, for instance, Lenny Henry in 1984 to The Lenny Henry Show in 2004. Sony VAIO PCG-3C2M Battery
The highest professional achievement by a British African-Caribbean actor to date (2006) was Marianne Jean-Baptiste's 1996 nominations for an Academy Award (Oscar), Golden Globe and British Academy Award (bafta) for her feature-film debut role in Secrets & Lies. Sony VAIO PCG-5N2M Battery
Jamaican poet James Berry was one of the first Caribbean writers to come to Britain after the 1948 British Nationality Act. He was followed by writers including Barbadians George Lamming and Edward Kamau Brathwaite, Trinidadians Samuel Selvon and C. L. R. James, Sony VAIO PCG-5P1M Battery
Jamaican Andrew Salkey and the Guyanese writer Wilson Harris. These writers viewed London as the centre of the English literary scene, and took advantage of the BBC Radio show Caribbean Voices to gain attention and be published. By relocating to Britain, Sony VAIO VGN-FZ31M Battery
these writers also gave Caribbean literature an international readership for the first time and established Caribbean writing as an important perspective within English literature. Some Caribbean writers also began writing about the hardships faced by settlers in post-war Britain. Sony Vaio VGN-FZ19VN Battery
Lamming addressed these issues in his 1954 novel The Emigrants, which traced the journey of migrants from Barbados as they struggled to integrate into British life. By the mid-1980s, a more radical wave of writers and poets were addressing the African-Caribbean experience in Britain, Sony Vaio VGN-FZ39VN Battery
promoted by a group of new publishing houses such as Akira, Karia, Dangaroo, and Karnak House, alongside the older established New Beacon Books and Bogle-L'Ouverture Publications, both founded in the 1960s, and the International Book Fair of Radical Black and Third World Books (1982–1995). Sony Vaio VGN-FZ39VN Battery
In 1984, the poet Fred D'Aguiar (born in London to Guyanese parents) won the T. S. Eliot Prize, and in 1994 won the Whitbread First Novel Award for The Longest Memory. Linton Kwesi Johnson's rhyming and socio-political commentary over dub beats made him the unofficial poet laureate of the British African-Caribbean community. Sony Vaio VGN-FZ31ZR Battery
Another dub poet, Benjamin Zephaniah, born in Birmingham to Jamaican parents, overcame a spell in prison to become a well-known writer and public figure. In 2003 he declined an OBE, stating that it reminded him of "thousands of years of brutality, it reminds me of how my foremothers were raped and my forefathers brutalised". Sony Vaio VGN-FZ31SR Battery
African-Caribbean British writers have achieved recent literary acclaim. In 2004, Andrea Levy's novel Small Island was the winner of the 2004 Orange Prize for Fiction, one of Britain's highest literary honours. Levy, born in London to Jamaican parents, is the author of four novels, Sony Vaio VGN-FZ31ER Battery
each exploring the problems faced by Black British-born children of Jamaican emigrants. In 2006 Zadie Smith won the Orange Prize for On Beauty. Smith's acclaimed first novel, White Teeth, was a portrait of contemporary multicultural London, drawing from her own upbringing with an English father and a Jamaican mother. Sony Vaio VGN-NR31E/S Battery
The UK also has a modest output of African-Caribbean popular fiction. A widely known example is Yardie, a work of Urban fiction written by Victor Headley in 1992, describing the life of a Jamaican courier carrying cocaine from Jamaica to London. The book was published by Steve Pope and Dotun Adebayo of Xpress books. Sony Vaio VGN-NR31ER/S Battery
The Voice newspaper was the primary African-Caribbean newspaper in Britain, and was founded in the early 1980s by Val McCalla. However, today it is owned by a Jamaican publisher and has a Caribbean focus. Pride magazine, which has been going for 21 years, Sony Vaio VGN-NR31J/S Battery
is the largest lifestyle magazine for the community and was described by The Guardian newspaper as the dominant lifestyle magazine for the black community in the UK for over 15 years. Its owner Pride Media also specialises in helping organisations target the community through a range of media. Sony Vaio VGN-NR31MR/S Battery
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