02 10 / 2012
Welcome to the Nigerian-British History Project.
This is a social history project set up and run by me, Bim Adewunmi. I’m a journalist and writer, born in London to Nigerian parents. I’ve lived most of my life in London, England but with substantial stretches in Lagos and Sagamu, Ogun State, where I went to boarding school for five years.
Nigerians have been in the UK in some capacity for a very long time, and our history, through trade, colonisation and everything else means our existences are intertwined forever. For better or worse. The project is an attempt to collect the individual (and ultimately, collective) stories of people who are simultaneously British and Nigerian. It is a more social history - like a Geffrye Museum of Nigerian peoples - something I feel tends to get neglected in the grand narrative of Nigerian history (military juntas, Biafra, Ken Saro-Wiwa, Ogoniland and oil company exploitation, corruption et al).
I am looking for stories of everyday Nigerian-Brits - how they came to be here in the UK, what they left behind (if anything), what they ate, how and where they lived, their social groups and communities; I want to explore and record the interiority of Nigerian-Brits. The hope is to showcase these stories here, with some audio (and photographs if shared). I am currently meeting and recording people’s stories in London, but the aim is to get out of the capital and meet people from across the UK. I am happy to enter into correspondence with would-be participants - we can collect stories via email, IM, over the phone or even good old-fashioned snail mail. The key thing is that we collect them. Here’s the original post I wrote about the project.
If you would like to talk to me for this project, then I would love to hear from you. Please email me at yorubagirldancing [at]gmail[dot]com or use the ‘Submit’ button on this blog (top of the page). You can also find me on Twitter. Please bear in mind that I’m doing this project solo, around other work commitments, and with no funding. So I may be late in getting back to you - but I will. Eventually.
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