Black History Month 2020

Thursday, 01 October 2020
A number of events are taking place at the University throughout October in celebration of Black History Month, acknowledging history is being made not just during this month but every minute, every hour, every day, every week and month.

Black History Month has been celebrated in the UK for more than 30 years. It acknowledges signature moments in the history of the UK and is a celebration of the magnificence of cultural diversity and the enriching value in peaceful co-existence.

At Nottingham we are committed to supporting Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) for our staff and students and will be celebrating Black History Month virtually for 2020. We’d like to encourage everyone to get involved, join our celebrations and share details of the programme within their respective areas.

Highlights of the month include:

  • EDI Blog: Baroness Young, Chancellor, recognises Black History Month
    Thursday 1 October

  • Online Panel – What is Black Joy? 
    Wednesday 7 October, 5 – 6.30pm

To launch this year’s Black History Month celebrations, please join us for this online discussion about what Black Joy means to members of our university community – including staff, students and alumni. Our panel of speakers will share in the insights and reflections about how Black joy is a presence in their lives and celebrates what it means to be Black.

For more information, and to book your place, visit the event page.

  • Is the University Colonial?: Critical Conversations on Its Past 
    Monday 19 October: 5 – 6.30pm

An online panel of leading scholars from Nottingham and Connecticut, will discuss the role that universities have had in cultivating racist narratives and inequality in society. This will set the scene for two future talks that will look at the positive role that formal education can and will play in ensuring future equality for all.

To book your place, visit the event page.

  • Online Panel: Why We Need Black Radicalism
    Wednesday 21 October, 5.30 – 7pm

As part of our Black History Month celebrations, we will look at the role of Black Radicalism in creating and maintaining Black Joy. Black radical movements are often presented with military agendas that aim to overthrow systemic racism at any cost. However, radical philosophies, including many Afrofuturist concepts, ask us to reimagine society in positive and nurturing ways. Black radical collectives continue to explore ways of belonging and supporting people from all positions including centring queer and disabled voices and the thoughts of those in incarceration. 

For more information, and to book your place, visit the event page.

  • In Safe Hands – The Voices of Black Britain 
    Sunday 25 October onwards 

In Safe Hands -The Voices of Black Britain is an online exhibition and audio documentary that celebrates the Black pioneers who claimed necessary spaces in British radio broadcasting from 1920s-1990s. From Calling The West Indies and Caribbean Voices in the 40s/50s, to the thriving pirate radio stations in the 80s, to Choice FM in the 90s; In Safe Hands, takes you on a journey exploring the often neglected stories of the voices of Black Britain who served their communities whose culture, tastes and interests were not being catered for by the mainstream. 

Register your place on the event page.

  • Fireside chat between Baroness Young, Chancellor and Professor Shearer West, Vice-Chancellor
    Thursday 29 October, 5.30-6.30pm

    Dr Maria Arruda, BAME Staff Network Chair, said: “The year of 2020 has served as a magnifying lens on racial inequalities, graphically revealing the consequences of colonialism and imperialism in shaping the white supremacist systems that still prevail in our Society.

    COVID-19 has shown the impact of structural racism, with members of the Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) community being hit the hardest by this modern plague, not because of the colour of their skin, but the fact they are disproportionately represented among frontline workers and the victims of discrimination as workers and patients. The murder of George Floyd reinvigorated the Black Lives Matter movement, turning trauma into action, revealing to the world the systemic violence against Black individuals across the Globe.

    These discussions have trickled down to the core of Higher Education, with Universities around the Globe examining their role in perpetuating racist practices and how institutional racism has negatively impacted the scientific ecosystem, contributing to the leaky pipeline that prevents BAME, particularly Black individuals from a career in Academia.

    Black Joy is the way the Black community has responded to the most terrifying modes of oppression for centuries, not only surviving, but thriving amidst violence and contempt. The University of Nottingham’s decision of focusing this year’s BHM events around the theme Black Joy will bring our community together to celebrate Black History while continuing to hold long-overdue discussions on how to be a truly anti-racist institution, with local, national and global influence.”

    Join on Microsoft Teams.


Other events may be announced throughout the month.

There is a range of other events taking place throughout the University and also a number of events via the Students' Union.

For more information on these, visit the SU website.

Student Communications Officer

Communications and Marketing
University Park Campus
Nottingham, NG7 2RD

telephone:+44 (0)115 82 32353