I just want to say that I had already planned to feature Claudia Jones today before I logged into Google and saw that she was featured on today’s Google Doodle. What can I say? Great minds think alike and I’ve always felt I had a mind as broad and deep as Google.
I’m sure this won’t surprise you if you’ve been following my Black History coverage so I’ll get it out of the way early – she’s Trinidadian (whoop whoop).
She was a feminist, political activist, black nationalist and communist, the latter being the reason for which she got deported from the US.
But that brought her to UK, which forever changed our landscape. Claudia got involved in the Black African-Caribbean diaspora.
She started the West Indian Gazette, right down the road from me in Brixton. It was an anti-racist publication which was a major contributor to increasing consciousness within the Black British Community.
Carnival in Trinidad and Tobago is a huge celebration titled “The Greatest Show on Earth”. It is colour and wonder and magic.
Claudia Jones brought some of that magic to the UK, starting a chain of events that ultimately became what we now know as Notting Hill Carnival here in London.
Her original events were created to help the community heal from race riots that happened in Notting Hill and Nottingham in the UK in 1958, just as Carnival in Trinidad brings people together.
This year because of the COVID outbreak was the first time since 1966 that the Carnival did not take place.
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