Released on 03 November 2016.

Read extract  

Black and British

A Forgotten History

4.53 based on 173 ratings & 36 reviews on

2017 Short-listed

Jahalak Prize

2017 Long-listed

The Orwell Prize

2017 Winner

PEN Hessell-Tiltman Prize


Winner of the 2017 PEN Hessell-Tiltman Prize
A History Book of the Year
Longlisted for the Orwell Prize
Shortlisted for the inaugural Jhalak Prize

In Black and British, award-winning historian and broadcaster David Olusoga offers readers a rich and revealing exploration of the extraordinarily long relationship between the British Isles and the people of Africa. Drawing on new genetic and genealogical research, original records, expert testimony and contemporary interviews, Black and British reaches back to Roman Britain, the medieval imagination and Shakespeare's Othello.

It reveals that behind the South Sea Bubble was Britain's global slave-trading empire and that much of the great industrial boom of the nineteenth century was built on American slavery. It shows that Black Britons fought at Trafalgar and in the trenches of the First World War. Black British history can be read in stately homes, street names, statues and memorials across Britain and is woven into the cultural and economic histories of the nation.

Unflinching, confronting taboos and revealing hitherto unknown scandals, Olusoga describes how black and white Britons have been intimately entwined for centuries. Black and British is a vital re-examination of a shared history, published to accompany the landmark BBC Two series.

In the media

An insightful, inclusive history of black people in Britain . . . Rich in detail and packed with strong personalities, this is an important contribution to our understanding of life in the UK.
History Revealed
A thrilling tale of excavation
[A] comprehensive and important history of black Britain . . . Written with a wonderful clarity of style and with great force and passion. It is thoroughly researched and there are many interesting anecdotes.
The Sunday Times
David Olusoga at The Bath Festival

David Olusoga at The Bath Festival

  • Assembly Rooms
    Assembly Rooms
    Bennett Street BATH, BA1 2QH. UNITED KINGDOM
  • 21 May 2018 19:00
21 May 2018 07:00Z 21 May 2018 08:00Z

Historian David Olusoga’s award-winning book Black and British: A Forgotten History shone a light on this country’s hidden history from Roman Britain to the present day. Now, alongside Simon Schama...

More info >
Add event to your calendar: iCal GCal
David Olusoga at the Hay Festival

David Olusoga at the Hay Festival

  • Oxfam Moot
    Oxfam Moot
    Hay on Wye, UNITED KINGDOM
  • 27 May 2018 14:30
27 May 2018 02:30Z 27 May 2018 03:30Z

Drawing on new genealogical research, original records and expert testimony, the historian and broadcaster reaches back to Roman Britain, the medieval imagination, Elizabethan ‘blackamoors’ and the...

More info >
Add event to your calendar: iCal GCal