by Shango Baku - £6.99 Hansib Publications Limited (2008)
paperback ISBN 13: 9781906190170 | ISBN 10: 1906190178
Beacons of Liberation was first published in 1995. It was themed on a mural at the Yaa Asantewaa Arts Centre in Paddington, London, depicting twelve historical Black leaders; six men and six women who had advanced the cause of African liberty by their heroic effeorts to better the conditions of their people. The list included freedom fighters and activists from a range of backgrounds in Africa and the Diaspora - from Queen Nzinga in 16th century Angola to Queen Mother Moore in 20th century USA. Their brief biographies were collated to highlight the ongoing struggle for equality and freedom that still resonates in the 21st century.
This edition has been extended to include three other achievers: Mary Prince, Robert Wedderburn, and Ira Aldridge. Their considerable impact on the abolitionist movement in Britain determines their inclusion. Prince became the featured icon of the abolitionist movement. Wedderburn linked class oppression in Britain to slavery in the West Indies. Through his stagecraft Aldridge dispelled the myht of Black inferiority that fuelled the powerful British pro-slavery lobby. The resurrection of these role-models will serve to fill a gap in the history of emancipation from a Black perspective.
Beacons of Liberation is by no means an exhaustive listing of Black achievement - nor is it meant to be. It is a broad canvas of appreciation that cites a few shining examples of self-emancipation. It aims to change widely held notions of Black subservience, and to promote a positive understanding of the role of Africans in their own liberation. It emphasises the contribution of eminent Africans to the human rights agenda we inherit today. It addresses imbalances in euro-centric history by tracing a journey of empowerment that has benefitted the global village in its search for equality, justice, and peace.
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In booklists: Black History, Africa, Black Liberation, Women in Africa, In categories: History & Biography, Black, Asian & Other Diasporas, World - Africa, Anti-Racism, Changing the World, Feminism & Women,