Talk on Marcus Garvey by Colin Grant

As part of the GPI's July programme, Colin Grant will talk about his new book on Marcus Garvey

At one time in the first half of the twentieth century, Marcus Mosiah Garvey was the most famous black man in the world. Born into poverty in rural Jamaica and then moving to the USA, he was a self-educated man with an incisive mind and an astonishing ability to electrify the imagination. His championing of the Harlem Renaissance and use of pageantry to evoke a lost African civilisation and to articulate the submerged thoughts of a despised but awakening people brought him admirers and enemies in equal measure. In 1920 he masterminded the month-long first International Convention of the Negro Peoples of the World, and his Universal Negro Improvement Association soon boasted over 1100 branches in more than 40 countries. His newspaper, Negro World, published writers including Claude McKay and Langston Hughes. Yet only a decade later Garvey was serving time in a US penitentiary for mail fraud.

Colin Grant is an independent historian. He is the son of Jamaican parents who came to England in the late 1950s. He studied medicine for five years before turning to writing and now works as a radio producer for the BBC Science Unit. Negro With a Hat is his first book.

Jul 24, 2008

George Padmore Institute, 76 Stroud Green Road, London N4 3EN, UK