Photograph of Amy Ashwood Garvey and John McNair at the 1945 Pan-African Congress, 1945


The Jamaican journalist and activist Amy Ashwood Garvey is pictured here chairing a panel, alongside socialist politician John McNair, at the Fifth Pan-African Congress in Manchester in 1945.

The Pan-African Congress was a series of seven meetings held globally between 1919 and 2014. Each addressed the status of Africa and the African diaspora in relation to the effects of European colonialism.

The Fifth Congress is considered to be the first major step taken after World War Two in the fight for independence and freedom from British imperialism.[1] Some demands and topics of discussion are illustrated by the anti-colonial signs posted to the stage, calling for ‘Oppressed peoples of the Earth unite!’, ‘Freedom for all subject peoples’ and ‘Ethiopia wants exit to the sea’.

[1] Hakim Adi and Marika Sherwood, The 1945 Manchester Pan-African Congress Revisited (London, 1995).

Full title:
Pan-African Congress
November 1945
Photograph / Image
© John Deakin / Stringer / Picture Post / Getty Images
Held by
Getty Images

Related articles

Caribbean anti-colonial activists in Britain before World War Two

Article by:
Hakim Adi
Waves of history, Authors, artists and activists

At the turn of the 20th century, colonialism meant that colonial subjects did not have the right to determine their own future. Hakim Adi introduces us to Pan-Africanism and some of the key figures and organisations who campaigned against colonialism and racism before the outbreak of World War Two.

Related collection items