Small Axe Anthology: Exploring West Indian Life Abroad

The Small Axe Anthology Series showcase the real-life experiences of London's West Indian community between 1960 and 1982.


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The Five Movies in Small Axe and Why You Should Watch Them
Small Axe Anthology | Credit: Amazon.com

Representation is very important in our modern society.  Being represented can bring to light decades long issues of social injustice.  The West Indian diaspora is spread across multiple continents and their plight often goes untold.

Steve Mcqueen’s Small Axe is anthology series that consists of five films which tell distinct stories about the lives of West Indian immigrants living in London during the 1960s and 1970s.

The reason you should watch Small Axe, is because it shows what can happen when people stand up for what is right.  Like most immigrants, those being represented in this anthology face consistent discrimination.  They were willing to take on the system, stand up for what is right and give them a hell of a fight.  Its because of their struggles why we are able to enjoy the freedoms we take for granted today.

  1. 1 Mangrove


    Mangrove tells this true story of The Mangrove Nine, who clashed with London police in 1970. The trial that followed was the first judicial acknowledgment of behavior motivated by racial hatred within the Metropolitan Police.  

    Caribbean people are known to be fighters and it is proven by the actions of Marcus Garvey in the 1920s.  He used his resources to uplift African Americans and restore a sense of pride in their African heritage with the establishment of the United Negro Improvement Association (UNIA).  His life work was forever changed when his philosophy was challenged by the system and he paid the price for daring to give hope to a people who were beatened and victimized for hundreds of years.   Mangrove is a story of West Indian people fighting back against that same system using their own techiniques and tools against it.  


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Delroy James

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