Legacies of the Slave Trade: Richard Atkinson, Geraldine Onek & Alex Renton
Like many well-to-do Georgian families, the Atkinsons’ wealth was acquired at a terrible cost, through the labour and lives of enslaved Africans. Drawing on his ancestors’ private correspondence, in Mr Atkinson’s Rum Contract Richard Atkinson pieces together their unsettling story, from the weather-beaten house in Cumbria where his family once lived, to the ruins of their sugar estates in Jamaica. In Blood Legacy, drawing similarly on family papers in Scotland, Alex Renton explores what inheritance – political, economic, moral and spiritual – has been passed to the descendants of the slave owners and the descendants of the enslaved, and asks how reparations can be made for the past.
Geraldine Onek will discuss with Richard and Alex how they came to write their books, and how they and the work being done by Lancaster Black History Group and the University’s Atlantic Slave Trade project are helping us all to gain a truer understanding of British history and its legacies.
Mr Atkinson’s Rum Contract is “A towering achievement, founded on painstaking research, written with elegance and elan, salted with humour and shot-through with intelligent warmth and compassion” -Monica Ali
Blood Legacy is “an incredible work of scholarship” -Sathnam Sanghera
Richard Atkinson is a book publisher. He lives in London, but holds a deep-rooted affection for the north of England, the land of his ancestors.
Geraldine Onek is a primary school teacher, an honorary researcher at Lancaster University and founder of Lancaster Black History Group.
Alex Renton is a journalist who has won awards for his work as an investigator, war correspondent and food policy writer. He lives in Edinburgh.
How to Watch:
In person at The Auditorium, The Storey
Online via Crowdcast
Watch in-person £8 (£6 concessions)
Watch online £5
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