Roil Britannia! Al Sharpton, the British Press, and the 1991 Murder of Rolan Adams

E. James West

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Drawing on archival material from the Black Cultural Archives, the British Library, and the Institute of Race Relations, this article sheds fresh light on a largely overlooked 1991 visit to Britain by controversial Black American preacher Al Sharpton following the racist murder of Black teenager Rolan Adams. The extraordinary response to Sharpton’s arrival by the British mainstream press revealed racist patterns of news reporting and a chauvinistic rejection of ‘outside agitators’, while the minister’s intervention drew a mixed response from local activists. However, the furore sparked by Sharpton’s visit also helped to raise public awareness of Adams’ murder and galvanise local Black communities, providing an important insight into anti-racist organising and British media coverage of high-profile racist incidents prior to the death of Stephen Lawrence.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)184-210
Number of pages26
JournalImmigrants & Minorities
Volume37
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2 Sep 2019

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