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FILM: RACISM A History Showing Thu Feb 11th 2016 at 6:00pm

Tickets: $6
A powerful film which explores the impact of racism on a global scale and chronicles the shifts in the perception of race and the history of racism in Europe, the Americas, Australia and Asia. 

Racism – A History is a challenging and often harrowing account of the origins, development and legacy of racism and the violence which results from racist perceptions; perceptions which it asserts are still ingrained in western societies to this day. Anyone doubting the veracity of this assertion is reminded that the vast majority of the world’s wealth remains in the hands of white people in the northern hemisphere, a wealth acquired and maintained through slavery.

Racism – A History was first broadcast on BBC Four in March 2007 to mark the bicentenary of the Slave Trade Act 1807 which abolished the slave trade in the British Empire. In a three-part documentary series, the history of racism over the last 500 years is examined in close detail, revealing some uncomfortable truths about how racist attitudes came into being and spread into popular opinion. Though slavery had, of course, existed for many centuries dating back to ancient civilisations, the concept of racism as we understand it today really only began with the enslavement of Africans in the sixteenth century.

 Racism – A History reveals how it was actually the slave trade which promoted racism and not, as might easily be presumed, vice versa. Prior to this, skin colour was not in fact the defining factor in prevailing racial attitudes, as Dr. Barnor Hesse, Associate Professor of African-American Studies at Northwestern University illustrates in a discussion on the contact between the early European colonists of the New World and its indigenous peoples.
 The burgeoning trade in Africans, however, gave birth to the idea that different races of human beings existed, distinguished by the colour of their skin.

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