15 October 2019
19:00 - 21:00
Free Word and Wasafiri
Writing Our Way Home
Roger Robinson, Winsome Pinnock, Inua Ellams, Bridget Minamore on writing and resistance
What power does literature have in hostile environments? Can it do more than describe homes and spaces of belonging – can it create them? In a society overwhelmed with questions of who has the right to be heard and who doesn’t, can literature strengthen threatened communities?
Literary magazine Wasafiri held a very special evening uniting Black British writers from across generations in readings and reflections. More than the usual panel discussion, attendees were invited to be active participants in the event, having the opportunity to engage in a debate on literature’s power to construct, support and redefine ‘home’ for those on the margins.
Inua Ellams is an internationally touring poet, playwright and performer who has written for the Royal Shakespeare Company, The National Theatre and the BBC; Bridget Minamore is a poet, critic, essayist, and journalist, writing for The Guardian about pop culture, theatre, race and class; Roger Robinson is writer, musician and performer who was named one of the top 50 writers to have influenced the black-British writing canon; Winsome Pinnock is a multi-award-winning playwright, dramaturg and university lecturer of Jamaican heritage, described by The Guardian as ‘the godmother of black-British playwrights’.
Wasafiri is Britain’s premier literary magazine for international contemporary writing, discovering and promoting work by new and established voices across the globe.
Season branding: THREAD Design | Photography: Naomi Woddis
15 October 2019
19:00 - 21:00
£10 / £7 (30 & under)
Free Word and Wasafiri
Writer, Musician and Performer
Roger Robinson is a Trinidadian writer, dub poet and musician who has lived in London for 20 years. He has performed worldwide and is an experienced workshop leader and lecturer on poetry. His one-man shows are: The Shadow Boxer, Letter from My Father’s Brother, and Prohibition. He was chosen by Decibel as one of 50 writers who have influenced the black-British writing canon. His workshops have been a part of a shortlist for the Gulbenkian Prize for Museums and Galleries and were also a part of the Webby Award winning Barbican’s Can I Have A Word. He has toured internationally with the British Council and is a co-founder of both Spoke Lab and the international writing collective Malika’s Kitchen.
Poet, Playwright and Performer
Inua Ellams is an internationally touring poet, playwright, performer, graphic artist & designer. He is an ambassador for the Ministry of Stories and has published four books of poetry: ‘Candy Coated Unicorns and Converse All Stars’, ‘Thirteen Fairy Negro Tales’ 'The Wire-Headed Heathen' and '#Afterhours'. His first play ‘The 14th Tale’ was awarded a Fringe First at the Edinburgh International Theatre Festival and his fourth ‘Barber Shop Chronicles’ sold out its run at England’s National Theatre. He is currently touring 'An Evening With An Immigrant' and working on ‘The Half God of Rainfall’ – a new play in verse. In graphic art & design, online and in print, he tries to mix the old with the new, juxtaposing texture and pigment with flat shades of colour and vector images. He lives and works from London, where he founded the Midnight Run, a nocturnal urban excursion. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature.
Playwright and Lecturer
Winsome Pinnock was born in Islington, North London. She is an award-winning playwright, academic and dramaturg. Her work has been produced on the British stage and internationally since 1985. She was the first black British female writer to have a play produced by the Royal National Theatre. Winsome is Associate Professor in Drama at Kingston University and was Senior Visiting Fellow at Cambridge University. She has worked as a dramaturg with the Royal National Theatre’s New Views scheme as well as with the Royal Court’s International Department. The prizes awarded to her work include the George Devine Award, The Pearson Plays on Stage Award and the Unity Theatre Trust Award.
Poet, Critic, Essayist and Journalist
Bridget Minamore is a British-Ghanaian writer from south-east London. She is a poet, critic, essayist, and journalist, writing for The Guardian about pop culture, theatre, race and class. Titanic (Out-Spoken Press), her debut pamphlet of poems on modern love and loss, was published in May 2016. She has been commissioned by Historic England, the Tate Modern, Nike, and ESPN, and in 2013 was shortlisted to be London’s first Young Poet Laureate. In 2015 she was chosen as one of The Hospital Club’s Emerging Creatives, as well as one of Speaking Volumes’ 40 Stars of Black British Literature. In 2018 she co-founded Critics of Colour with playwright Sabrina Mahfouz, a collective for UK-based people of colour which aims to make writing about theatre, dance, and/or opera more accessible.
There is step-free access to all areas of Free Word and a number of other facilities available to make the venue accessible.
- Our box office, theatre and hall are all on the ground floor with step-free access from the street
- Meeting rooms and offices are accessible by lift from the ground floor
- There are two accessible toilets on the ground floor
- Hearing loops are available at the box office and the theatre (when set up theatre style) and in all meeting rooms
- If you need to bring someone for assistance, please get in touch with us so we can provide a free ticket for them
Please talk to our team if you have specific access requirements.