Malik Al Nasir is an author, poet and academic from Liverpool.
His presentation of ‘The truth that lies behind Roscoe’ may at times be uncomfortable or challenging to the audience, but is very much in the spirit of LJMU Roscoe Lectures; helping foster informed debate, intellectual inquiry and free speech in Liverpool.
William Roscoe is one of Liverpool’s most famous sons and the architect of many of its celebrated institutions, but what do we really know about Roscoe?
Malik Al Nasir a PhD researcher at University of Cambridge, St Catharine’s College, who has Roscoe in his family tree, will unravel an epic tale of the network that supported Roscoe’s philanthropic and civic works, and the nuance inherent within it, in a way which will challenge our historic understanding of the man who was so evidently recorded as Liverpool’s most outspoken critic of the trans-Atlantic trade in enslaved Africans.
Malik’s memoir, Letters to Gil, is a compelling account of his childhood experiences in a brutal UK Local Authority care system, which left him traumatised, semi-literate, homeless, and destitute at eighteen, when a chance meeting with poet and civil rights activist Gil Scott-Heron proved life changing and put Malik on a path to success.
He went onto graduate from all three of Liverpool’s universities, deliver keynote addresses to children’s care service commissioners and policy makers, help to craft the ‘Widening Access and Participation Bill’ and is working on a policy document called ‘Lifting the Barriers to Black Academia Through Positive Action and Decolonisation’.
In addition Malik is bringing together UK universities to develop a positive action doctoral training partnership and colonial research centre, to facilitate participatory action research in line with the work he is doing with libraries, universities, museums and galleries, around decolonising their archives and collections.
While tracing his ancestry back to Demerara, Malik uncovered an astounding story that sheds new light on forgotten aspects of the true extent of Britain’s role in the slave trade, resulting in a two book deal with the William Collins imprint of HarperCollins and a full ESRC scholarship for a PhD in history at University of Cambridge. Malik has since received the prestigious ‘Sydney Smith Memorial Prize’ for ‘outstanding achievement’ at St Catharine’s College and the Vice Chancellors Award for global social impact.