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From Sylhet to Spitalfields

Bengali Squatters in 1970s East London

Emdad Rahman

A discussion with author Dr Shabna Begum, hosted by Dr Georgie Wemyss

Brick Lane Circle is delighted to invite you to join the discussion to learn more about the 1970s housing struggles of Bengalis in the London’s East End. In addition to the dilapidated, poor-conditioned and overcrowded housing, our community faced and experienced immediate threats of racial discrimination and extreme racial violence as they tried to settle and make a new life in East London.

Until recently, the stories of East London squatters in the 1970s who originated from the Sylhet region of Bangladesh remained hidden from the general public. As a result, new generations of people born or settled in the area during subsequent decades have been blissfully unaware of the struggles, dramas, campaigns and multi-community collaborations that took place in the streets of Spitalfields and nearby locations, which spearheaded actions that brought many of the positive changes that took place over the years.

Dr Shabna Begum, in her first book based on her doctoral research, called From Sylhet to Spitalfields: Bengali Squatters in 1970s East London, reveals much of the hidden, unknown stories and struggles of Bengali squatters, reflecting on how they may inform our understanding of present-day struggles, which she will share and discuss with you on 14 June 2023 at the Idea Store Whitechapel.

You are invited to join the discussion with Dr Shabna Begum, which Dr Georgie Wemyss will host, and engage with her and share your stories.

You will be able to buy signed copies of the book.

Sign up LINK!

For further details, please email bricklanecircle@yahoo.co.uk

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