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TALK: School SOS_23: Abolishing Institutional Racism
Wed 19 Jul 2023
Past event

A man stands in a crowd and holds a microphone. He is wearing a black cap.

Image courtesy Adam Elliott-Cooper

Abolishing Institutional Racism: Policing, Activism and Radical Alternatives 

Join us for a talk with Adam Elliott-Cooper author of Black Resistance to British Policing. Adam will present a lecture at the SLG on abolishing institutional racism.

The summer of 2020 saw the largest black-led protests in UK history. Hundreds of thousands took to the streets across Britain, primarily focused on the ongoing problem of police racism. But what are the Black radical traditions from which these protests emerged? How can these histories help us to understand where we go from here?

Adam considers why the rise of equality and diversity, unconscious bias training and government commissions have failed to effectively challenge institutional racism. He argues that these failings provided the impetus for the political developments of 2020. Specifically, the endurance of police racism in 21st century Britain has served only to underline the necessity for more radical demands in challenging institutional racism. Adam believes that has spurred on present-day activists to draw on the radical Black Power politics of the twentieth century to complement abolitionist demands which seek alternatives to police and prison power. 


Adam Elliott-Cooper is lecturer in social and public policy, in the School of Politics and International Relations, Queen Mary University of London. He is author of Black Resistance to British Policing, and co-author of Empire’s Endgame: Racism and the British State. He sits on the board of The Monitoring Group, a community organisation challenging state racism and racial violence. 


School SOS is a nomadic Not-For-Profit Critical Spatial Design School that seeks to challenge modes of delivering Higher Education in the UK. 

SOS-23 is a free 4 week critical spatial designer development programme based in London, UK for for 12 participants. Supported using public funding by Arts Council England.


  • Wheelchair Access and Disabled Toilets are available at this site.
  • This event is seated.
  • Please contact with access requirements. 
  • We offer free tickets for carers, please email to reserve your free carers ticket.