Join us on Thursday the 21st of December as we at JGPACA pay tribute to the late great poet, activist, musician, playwright and advocate Dr Benjamin Obadiah Iqbal Zephaniah.

The evening will begin with a rare screening of Pen Rhythm Poet (1981) and then we open the floor to anyone who would like to share thoughts, poems or stories in testament to the passing of a key figure in British cultural history.  A section of JGPACA archival materials will also be on display to help contextualise (provide context for) the cultural response to the incendiary political climate of the time. Refreshments will be provided.

Pen Rhythm Poet provides a remarkable document of the early career of Zephaniah in the period following the publication of his first collection of poetry by the Page One cooperative in 1981.  Interweaving snapshots of his daily life in both London and Birmingham, the film includes interviews with Zephaniah and his family in Handsworth (what he termed ‘the Jamaican capital of europe!’) alongside acapella performances and those with his full Dub poetry band. We also are given insight into Zephaniah’s burgeoning relationship with Rastafarianism, Pan Africanism and the defiant anti-authoritarianism which characterised much of his life’s work.               

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