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Statues, Slavery and the Struggle for Equality with David Olusoga, Dawn Butler and Susan Neiman

Will the global antiracism protests that spread after Floyd’s killing peter out – or is this moment different? Will there be lasting change – and if so, what will that look like?

This event has now finished and is available to watch on demand.

The statue of slave trader Edward Colston, who oversaw the enslavement of 84,000 African men, women and children, sits underwater in Bristol harbour. The statue of King Leopold II, whose colonial reign saw millions of people murdered in what is now the Democratic Republic of Congo, has been removed by authorities in Antwerp. The streets of American and British cities remain full of protestors. Democrats in the US Congress have authored a bill that would make it easier to discipline and punish racist police officers. And George Floyd, the African American man murdered by a white police officer in Minneapolis on May 25, was buried this week.

So what now? Will the global antiracism protests that spread after Floyd’s killing peter out – or is this moment different? Will there be lasting change – and if so, what will that look like? And what about past wrongs: How should governments deal with the legacy of slavery, institutionalised racism and discrimination? How should society educate citizens about forgotten histories?

To discuss these issues – rooted equally in the past, present and future – Intelligence Squared brings together the prominent historian David Olusoga, Labour MP Dawn Butler, and Susan Neiman, American moral philosopher and author of Learning from the Germans: Confronting Race and the Memory of Evil.

Join the conversation in our live online event and ask your questions to our speakers on Thursday 11 June at 6pm BST.


Speakers

Speaker

David Olusoga

Award-winning historian, writer and broadcaster


Award-winning historian, writer and broadcaster. His book, Black and British: A Forgotten History, was accompanied by a BBC 2 documentary series of the same name.

Dawn Butler

British Labour Party politician. Member of Parliament for Brent Central


Dawn Butler is a British Labour Party politician serving as a Member of Parliament for Brent Central since 2015. Butler served as Shadow Secretary of State for Women and Equalities in Jeremy Corbyn’s Shadow Cabinet from 2017 to 2020 and MP for Brent South from 2005 to 2010.

Susan Neiman

American moral philosopher and cultural commentator


American moral philosopher and cultural commentator. In her book Learning from the Germans: Confronting Race and the Memory of Evil, she explores how a country can come to terms with its racist history. She is director of the Einstein forum and formerly a professor of philosophy at Yale University and Tel Aviv University.
Chair

Yassmin Abdel-Magied

Writer and broadcaster


Yassmin is a broadcaster, writer and social advocate. She is author of You Must Be Layla and the critically acclaimed essays It's Not About The Burqa and The New Daughters of Africa.

 

Speakers are subject to change.