Search
  • Martin Clarke

Statues matter - words on the fall of Colston

On Sunday 7th June I watched wide-eyed as the statue of Sir Edward Colston was pulled down in Bristol. My reaction was visceral and was a surprise. In the evening, as usual in recent weeks, I joined the audience for the virtual Sunday Ceilidh organised by Mairi Campbell. As the Zooming progressed I glanced down at my phone as Colston was rolled into Bristol Docks.


It was a transformative, joyous sequence, and I needed to understand what had gone on there, in Bristol, and within me. Ever since, the words I am searching for have been swirling and growing around my head. It’s started me on a voyage of discovery, and self-discovery, one that I should have started many years ago.


I suggested to Mairi that I would like to say something at a future Ceilidh, and she kindly accepted it for Sunday 21st June. So here we are. I will put the piece on here.


In the meanwhile here are some threads to follow up if you wish to.


ARTNews.com articles

https://www.artnews.com/art-news/news/monuments-black-lives-matter-guide-1202690845/

https://www.artnews.com/art-news/news/edward-colston-monument-hew-locke-john-akomfrah-1202690316/

https://www.artnews.com/art-news/news/british-museums-black-lives-matter-statements-controversy-1202690203/

Art at the centre of the debate

https://artreview.com/why-colston-had-to-fall/

All museums and galleries must reconsider their holdings

https://www.artnews.com/art-news/news/british-museums-black-lives-matter-statements-

Britain is no country for old men blog on Anthony Bryan

https://tinyurl.com/y8xasyls

My first protest after two months at University - October 1968; a friend of mine climbed on the stage and banged a kettle drum to stir things up. Powell one week, Vietnam the next

https://www.historyofparliamentonline.org/from-the-grassroots/community/talking_points/enoch-powell-exeter-university

Spectator 13.6.20 Matthew Parris with a similar response to mine

https://www.theguardian.com/news/2018/mar/29/slavery-abolition-compensation-when-will-britain-face-up-to-its-crimes-against-humanity

English Heritage - Statue of Sir Edward Colston

https://historicengland.org.uk/listing/the-list/list-entry/1202137

Removal of Confederate monuments

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Removal_of_Confederate_monuments_and_memorials

Centre for the Study of Legacies of British Slave-Ownership - University College London

https://www.ucl.ac.uk/lbs/

Slavery is still misunderstood - David Olusoga

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/feb/12/treasury-tweet-slavery-compensate-slave-owners

A crowdsourced map of UK statues and monuments that celebrate slavery and racism

https://www.toppletheracists.org/

Britain’s 46,000 slave owners revealed

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/jul/12/british-history-slavery-buried-scale-revealed

List of slave owners

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_slave_owners

The Middle Passage

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Middle_Passage

Slave Ships list

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slave_ship

The Abolition Project

http://abolition.e2bn.org/index.php

Statue of Edward Colston

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Statue_of_Edward_Colston

Colston sculptor John Cassidy

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Cassidy_(artist)

https://sculpture.gla.ac.uk/view/person.php?id=msib1_1202142856


The Tate and Racial Equality

https://tinyurl.com/ybunpw34

Marc Barham, Decline and Fall - The Statues of Empire

https://medium.com/@marcbarham/decline-and-fall-the-statues-of-empire-968a98bb3493

White European slavery in North Africa in the 16th Century

https://face2faceafrica.com/article/the-shocking-history-of-enslavement-of-1-5-million-white-europeans-in-north-africa-in-the-16th-century

Slavery on the Barbary Coast

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slavery_on_the_Barbary_Coast

Slavery in Africa

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slavery_in_Africa

Marti Burgess - first black elected to Society of Merchant Venturers in Bristol , May 2020

https://www.bristolpost.co.uk/news/bristol-news/marti-burgess-appointed-first-black-4145717

Vanessa Kisuule - Bristol’s City Poet - poem on Colstons statue ‘Hollow’ June 2020

https://www.ideasfestival.co.uk/blog/bristol-city-poet/vanessa-kisuule-hollow/

Slavery in the 21st Century

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slavery_in_the_21st_century

Slavery in Roman Times

https://www.romanobritain.org/2-arl_life/arl_slavery.php

History Press - Slavery in history

https://www.thehistorypress.co.uk/articles/slavery-in-history/

Set in Stone ? Statues and Slavery in London

https://academic.oup.com/hwj/article/64/1/162/600955

43 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All