October is Black History Month; a time for celebrations to raise confidence and awareness of Black cultural heritage, accomplishments and experiences today.


The theme for Islington Black History Month 2011 is Inspiration and Enterprise and we have an exciting festival of activities for people to come together and be inspired by, with stories and cultural innovation in arts and business.  There are events across the borough for different ages including a film festival, theatre and literary performances, enterprise seminars, exhibitions, talks and workshops.

 For a full brochure of events please check out BHM(available from September), but see below for a few FAB things you can expect from the festival, organised by Islington BME Forum on behalf of Islington Council…


Saturday 15th October, 2pm

Traces of the Trade (UK Premier)

In Traces of the Trade, Producer/Director Katrina Browne tells the story of her forefathers, the largest slave-trading family in U.S. history. The film follows Browne and nine fellow family members on a remarkable journey which brings them face-to-face with the history and legacy of New England’s hidden enterprise.

From 1769 to 1820, DeWolf fathers, sons and grandsons trafficked in human beings. They sailed their ships from Bristol, Rhode Island to West Africa with rum to trade for African men, women and children. Over the generations, the family transported more than ten thousand enslaved Africans across the Middle Passage. They amassed an enormous fortune. By the end of his life, James DeWolf had been a U.S. Senator and was reportedly the second richest man in the United States.

The DeWolf descendants are confronted with dramatize questions: What, concretely, is the legacy of slavery—for diverse whites, for diverse blacks, for diverse others? Who owes who what for the sins of the fathers? What history do we inherit as individuals and as citizens? What would repair—spiritual and material—really look like and what would it take? Secured with the kind assistance of Africa in the Picture, Amsterdam.

(Dir: Katherina Browne, 2008, USA/86 min)


The Story of Maggie Walker            (European Premier)

In spite of humble beginnings in post-Civil War Richmond, Virginia, Maggie Lena Walker achieved national prominence as a businesswoman and community leader. Her business acumen, personality, and lifelong commitment to society fuelled her climb to success. She was the first woman in the United States to found a bank. As a leader her successes and vision offered tangible improvements in the way of life for African Americans and women.

(Dir: Various Legacy Media Institute (Tim Reid), 2011, USA/23 min)


Ancestral Wanderings

A series of four of Jamaican born artist Fowokan’s wanderings or word resonance as he calls his poems. The poems were selected to capture his journey, influences and awakening as an artist: his boyhood days in the Crown Colony hands of Jamaica in the 1940s; his foray into making things with his hands to his decision to become a sculptor after encountering the Benin bronzes on a trip to Nigeria. He later took to the video camcorder and began producing short videos.  Shango Baku, the Shakespearean actor brings life to the words of Fowokan’s Wanderings, powerfully illustrating over 60 years of Fowokan’s development.

(Dir: George ‘Fowokan’ Kelly, 2011, UK/10min)


Venue: King’s Place, 90 York Way, London, N1 9AG

Price: £6.50 / £4.50 in advance

Booking: 020 7520 1490 / www.kingsplace.co.uk


Monday 17th October

The Black British Filmmaker’s Guide to Success

Seasoned black Film commentator Nadia Denton discusses her book The Black British Filmmaker’s Guide to Success: Finance, Market and Distribute Your Film. This valuable, practical personal development guide, contains a wealth of advice and crucial information and over 40 interviews with black British filmmakers, industry experts and decision makers. This unmissable event will be chaired by Kunle Olulode (The New Black).www.blackfilmmakersguide.com


Venue: Islington Museum, 245 St. John’s Street EC1V 4NB

Time: 18.00 – 20.00

Price: FREE (booking essential)



Wednesday 19th October, 7pm

LGBT Shorts

Mogadishu Dreaming

Ahmed Hagi left Somalia for Australia as Somalia fell into civil war. His landscape paintings allow him the space to try and interpret his identity, incorporating his cherished memories from childhood within his adopted home of Australia.

(Dir: Lesley Branagan, Australia/2010, 9 min)


Mosa explores a young woman’s internal struggle after being the victim of a hate crime rape in South Africa. Now in London, Mosa takes advantage of new opportunities to start a new life, but after feeling objectified once again, she breaks through and finally decides to live on her own terms.

(Dir: Ana Moreno, UK/2010, 15min)




On a South London estate the local youths see themselves as being in a war — against the police, gangs, the world. They think nothing of bullying an effeminate young African asylum-seeker and his mother.

(Dir: Rikki Beadle-Blair, 2009/UK, 11min)


Black and Gay
Poet Dean Atta on coming out and his experience as a black gay man living in London.

(Dir: Kathy Sheppard, UK 2008, 3min)



Danny is a champion amateur boxer about to compete in his first professional fight. Years of coaching by his father Isaac and trainer Geoff are about to pay off. All Danny has to do is win. But as everyone is soon to discover… sometimes you have to lose to win.

(Dir: Kolton Lee, 2005/UK, 16min)


B.D. Women

A celebration of the history and culture of Black lesbians. Lively interviews feature Black women talking candidly about their sexual and racial identities. These contemporary views are cleverly interwoven with a dramatized love story, set in the 1920s, in which a sultry romance develops between a gorgeous jazz singer and her stylish butch lover. B.D. WOMEN rewrites the vanished history of Black lesbians’ lives in an eloquent and entertaining way.

(Dir: Inge Blackman aka Campbell X, UK 1994, 20 min)

Venue: King’s Place, 90 York Way, London, N1 9AG

Price: Price: £6.50 / £4.50 in advance

Booking: 020 7520 1490 / www.kingsplace.co.uk


Wednesday 26th October, 7pm


For charismatic criminal, Riva, a sudden burst of stolen wealth ignites an exhilarating, hedonistic and perilous journey through one of the most intriguing cities in Africa – Kinshasa. Multi-award winning VIVA RIVA! expertly combines fresh rhythm, violence and eroticism and ignites a new wave of African cinema, whilst demonstrating the intelligence, wit and technical accomplishment of European cinema. VIVA RIVA! will be released on DVD on October 17th. www.metrodomegroup.com

(Djo Tunda Wa Munga, 2010, Congo/96min, Lingala w/English Subtitles)

Venue: King’s Place, 90 York Way, London, N1 9AG

Price: Price: £6.50 / £4.50 in advance

Booking: 020 7520 1490 / www.kingsplace.co.uk


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