Claudia Jones

A Life in Exile



ISBN: 9781913546311 Categories: , ,

Format: Paperback

Publication date: October 1, 2021

Page extent: 240

This book tells the story of Trinidad-born Claudia Jones, a key figure in the movement for racial justice in Britain. Exiled in 1955 from the US for her affiliation to the Communist Party, she arrived in London penniless and became active in civil rights campaigns among the capital's West Indian communities. She set up the newspaper West Indian Gazette and in 1958, following racist violence in Notting Hill, launched an annual indoor carnival to showcase Caribbean culture.

Claudia Jones: A Life in Exile was the first book to chart the work of this visionary and pioneer, focusing on her time in Britain. Part of the Radical Black Women series, this new edition features a preface by Black feminist researcher Lola Olufemi and an appendix compiled by Marika Sherwood.

Preface by Lola Olufemi
1. Claudia Jones in the USA
2. ‘My Friend Claudia’
3. Claudia Jones and the British Communist Party
4. Claudia Jones: Political Activist
5. The West Indian Gazette by Donald Hinds
6. Carnival, carnival by Colin Prescod
7. Claudia’s death, burial and legacy

Sherwood’s work is more than biographical. She sketches a time in history that few cogently understand. Black British history too often starts with the Empire Windrush (1948) and then leapfrogs to the 1960s, without recording the intervening years. Sherwood reveals these ‘lost’ years and the struggles of the activists who peopled this topography. Jones was foremost among them, an intersectional activist before such a phrase was coined.  – Dr Onyeka Nubia, Edge Hill University, Huddersfield University