Oral history in dialogue – Southall Black Sisters

Hannana Siddiqui will be talking about Southall Black Sisters’ approach to remembering the past with Amy Tooth Murphy, Oral History Society

About this event


In a spirit of openness to inclusivity and critical reflection on its own record, the Oral History Society is launching a series of joint meetings with Black and minority ethnic (BME) organisations and individuals who share an interest in researching and understanding the past through the memories of people who lived it. The Society’s aim is to learn from the research activities of BME organisations and individuals and the dissemination of what they find, acknowledging that this may raise difficult issues. Through such dialogues the Society aims to acquire greater awareness and appreciation of UK BME history and its historians and to be inclusive of this through its activities.

The OHS is delighted to be able to announce that the first of these dialogues will be with Dr Hannana Siddiqui from Southall Black Sisters (SBS) on Thursday 12 May, by Zoom (access via Eventbrite) between 18.00 and 20.00 BST.

Dr Siddiqui will discuss how oral history has been critical to the work of SBS, which represent the experiences and views of survivors of gender-based violence in black and minority communities. Oral history informs all of SBS’s campaigning, policy, education and research work. As such, it gives black and minority women a voice, which is at the heart of SBS’ work. Her presentation will explore how this method has helped to challenge cultural and religious attitudes and values that justify gender-based violence and its instrumental role in legal and policy reform.

All are welcome to the dialogue and to join in with their own contributions and experiences.

To book your place, please visit the event’s Eventbrite page.

About the Speaker

Dr Hannana Siddiqui is an award-winning researcher and policy advocate working at SBS and as a freelance consultant. She has worked on violence against black and minority women and girls in the UK for about 35 years. Her wide range of work has included undertaking casework, strategic litigation and expert reports as well as policy advocacy, campaigning, providing training to professionals and research on domestic abuse, forced marriage, domestic homicide and so called ‘honour killings and ‘honour’ based abuse, suicide and self-harm, immigration and asylum law, no recourse to public funds, racism and religious fundamentalism.

Southall Black Sisters and Oral History

SBS has produced several publications and case studies based on oral history, including From Homebreakers to Jailbreakers, Turning the Page and Provoked. Works by Dr Hannana Siddiqui include: Moving in the Shadows: Violence in the Lives of Minority Women and Children, which she co-edited with Yasmin Rehman and Prof. Liz Kelly in 2013; No Safe Place with Bekhal Mahmod, which explores Mahmod’s life and the murder of  her younger sister, Banaz Mahmod, in a so-called ‘honour killing’ (due to published in July 2022); and ‘Building a temporal sequence for developing prevention strategies, risk assessment, and perpetrator interventions in domestic abuse related suicide, honour killing, and intimate partner homicide’ with Prof. Jane Monckton Smith, Sue Haile and Alexandra Sandham (funded by the Home Office under the Domestic Abuse Perpetrator Research Fund 20/21).

In July 2021, Dr Siddiqui wrote a guest blog for the British Library, ‘Unfinished Business: finally giving black feminist history and contribution its due’, which offers a personal reflection on her visit to the Library’s ‘Unfinished Business: The Fight for Women’s Rights’ exhibition.

About the Discussant

Dr Amy Tooth Murphy is Lecturer in Oral History at Royal Holloway, University of London, where she specialises in queer oral history. She is a Trustee of the Oral History Society and co-editor of the newly published, New Directions in Queer Oral History: Archives of Disruption (Routledge, 2022).


12 May 2022


6:00 pm - 8:00 pm


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