Meaningful Connections: how strong communities make stronger movements

Natalie Ward

A Gaisie

Attendees at the 5th Pan African Congress, Manchester, 1945. Archive Refrence GB3228.34

How Friendship and Business Help Build the Pan African Congress

Mr Alfred Gaisie’s 1995 Interview with Robin Grinter was my introduction into the Pan-African Congress archive collection. The archive is held within the Ahmed Iqbal Ullah Race Relations Resource Centre. I was immediately struck by how much importance he placed on his friendship with Dr T. Ras Makonnen. Continue reading

Then and Now: Revisiting The Lou Kushnick Interviews

By Hattie

The majority of our archival material here at the AIU Centre relates to the UK, more specifically to Manchester, emphasising our focus on race relations within our local communities’ history and heritage. However, I have recently taken on the task of getting to grips with the ‘Lou Kushnick Interviews’, which are all the way across the Atlantic ocean from Manchester in their subject matter. While they may focus on US history rather than Manchester’s, there is one quite major connection between the interviews and our city. Lou Kushnick, the founder of The Ahmed Iqbal Ullah Race Relations Resource centre, came to Manchester from the US in 1963 to study, and decided to stay. He became a lecturer in American Studies at the University of Manchester and these interviews formed part of his various research endeavours, conducted both in this city and back in the US. They now form part of our archive, and can be browsed along with Lou’s various papers and documents.

There are 95 interviews in total, each around an hour in length. Some span over multiple recordings, and some are shorter and straight to the point. The interviewees are mostly American politicians, academics, lawyers, union members and activists. If you are interested in US political and social history, or US racial inequality within housing, employment, education and welfare, the Lou Kushnick interviews will fascinate you. As a past student of American Studies myself, they certainly fascinated me.

A photo of a diagram drawn in pen linking each interview to its relevant theme

Note-taking and brainstorming while listening to the Lou Kushnick Interviews

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