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African-Asian Connections Festival

  • Trinity Art Centre Trinity Road BS20NW United Kingdom (map)

This year marks the 60th and 70th anniversaries of Indian, Malaysian, and Ghanaian independence from colonial rule. Histories of Asia and Africa are not often told together. But in the 1950s and 1960s, Asians and Africans promoted a new, optimistic vision of the 'Third World' as tensions escalated during the Cold War. 

This free public event highlights the vibrant networks of Asian and African activists, intellectuals, and artists who met and travelled across the two continents in the era of decolonisation. The event will launch a history exhibition and digital visualisation - in partnership with the Watershed's Pervasive Media Studio - that maps their journeys, with a short talk by historians working on the Afro-Asian Networks project. 

This will be followed by a roundtable discussion with members of Bristol’s Black and Asian activist and creative communities (including Sado Jirde, Edson Burton, and Jendayi Serwah) on the ways in which a historical understanding of African and Asian solidarity and connection might serve them today. 

We will also be featuring an exciting program of cultural activities, including a fusion Indian/African dance performance by Aanchal and Rubba, a short piece by a gamelan orchestra, and storytelling of African and Asian folktales for children. We will also be featuring Indonesian and Indian food stalls (and hopefully some West African food) run by Bristol-based chefs!

The tentative schedule is:

2-2:30: Tea and exhibition viewing

2:30-4:00: Short history talk followed by roundtable in Fyfe Hall

2:45-3:15: Storytelling in Graffiti Hall for children

4:00-5:00: Dance performance and music (Fyfe Hall)

4:30-6:00: Food stalls in Graffiti Hall

This event is organised by the Afro-Asian Networks Project, a research network funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, in partnership with the University of Bristol's Department of History and Brigstow Institute, as well as the Black Southwest Network.

To book your ticket, please follow the link here.