Dr Kennetta Perry

Job: Director, Stephen Lawrence Research Centre and Reader in History

School/department: School of Humanities

Address: De Montfort University, The Gateway, Leicester, LE1 9BH

T: 0116 257 7182

E: kennetta.perry@dmu.ac.uk

W: https://www.dmu.ac.uk


Personal profile

Dr. Kennetta Hammond Perry serves as Director of the Stephen Lawrence Research Centre at De Montfort University where she is also a Reader in History.

Prior to her appointment at De Montfort, she was an Associate Professor of History and Co-Director of the African & African American Studies Program at East Carolina University in the USA.

Dr. Perry received B.A. degrees in History and Political Science at North Carolina Central University and obtained a PhD in Comparative Black History at Michigan State University.

She has been awarded research fellowships with the Carter G. Woodson Institute for African & African American Studies at the University of Virginia; Duke University’s Department of History and the American Council of Learned Societies.

Her research interests include Black British history, transnational race politics, Black women’s history, archives of Black Europe, and anti-racist movements for citizenship, recognition and social justice throughout the African Diaspora.

She has published widely, including a book-length study on Afro-Caribbean migration to Britain following World War II titled London Is The Place For Me: Black Britons, Citizenship and the Politics of Race (Oxford Press, 2016).

Currently, she is researching histories of state-sanctioned racial violence and the relationship between the decline of the welfare state and the expansion of the carceral state in Britain during the second half of the twentieth century.

Research group affiliations

Stephen Lawrence Research Centre

Publications and outputs


London is the Place For Me:  Black Britons, Citizenship and the Politics of Race.  New York:  Oxford University Press, 2016.

Articles and Book Chapters

“Writing History:  Thinking Beyond the Past in the Present” History of the Present (forthcoming, April 2020)

“One British Thing:  The Hair Weavers Text Book:  A Study in Art of Hair-Weaving and Beauty CultureJournal of British Studies, forthcoming, 2020.

“Black Pasts, White Nationalist Racecraft and the Political Work of History” in Dan Geary, Jennie Sutton and Camilla Schofield, eds., From Enoch Powell to Donald Trump:  Britain, the United States and Global White Nationalism (Manchester:  University of Manchester Press, forthcoming, 2020).

“History Beyond Borders:  Teaching Black Britain and (Re)Imagining Race Politics” in Hakim Adi, ed. New Perspectives on Black British History (London:  Zed Books, 2019).

“Introduction:  Sex Race and Class” in Paul Field, Robin Bunce, Leila Hassan and Margaret Peacock, eds. Here to Stay, Here To Fight:  A Race Today Anthology (London:  Pluto Press, 2019

“The Temporal Dimension of ‘Thinking Black’:  A Comment” Historical Research (2019): 581-583

“‘U.S. Negroes, Your Fight is Our Fight’:  Black Britons and the 1963 March on Washington” in Robin D.G. Kelley and Stephen Tuck, eds. The Other Special Relationship:  Race, Rights and Riot in Britain and the United States (London: Palgrave, 2015).

“Black Britain and Race Politics in the Twentieth Century” History Compass 12, 8 (August, 2014):  651-663.

“‘Little Rock’ in Britain:  Jim Crow’s Transatlantic Topographies,” Journal of British Studies, 50, 1 (January, 2012):  155-177.

Popular Writing and Digital Media Work

“De Montfort University Launches Stephen Lawrence Research Centre” Transactions:  The Blog of the Royal Historical Society, 10 June 2019:  https://blog.royalhistsoc.org/2019/06/10/de-montfort-university-launches-stephen-lawrence-research-centre/

“Black Nationalist Women’s Political and Intellectual Labor” Black Perspectives Blog, 25 September 2019:  https://www.aaihs.org/black-nationalist-womens-political-and-intellectual-labor/

“Undoing the Windrush Narrative”  History Workshop Journal Online, August, 2018:  http://www.historyworkshop.org.uk/undoing-the-work-of-the-windrush-narrative/

w/ Christienna Fryar and Nicole M. Jackson, “Windrush and Britain’s Long History of Racialized Belonging” Black Perspectives Blog, 31 July 2018:  https://www.aaihs.org/windrush-and-britains-long-history-of-racialized-belonging/

w/ Kira Thurman, “Black Europe:  A Useful Category of Historical Analysis” Black Perspectives Blog, 20 December 2016:  https://www.aaihs.org/black-europe-a-useful-category-of-historical-analysis/

New Books Network, British Studies Podcast on London Is The Place For Me with Christienna Fryar, March, 2016:  http://newbooksnetwork.com/kennetta-h-perry-london-is-the-place-for-me-black-britons-citizenship-and-the-politics-of-race-oxford-up-2015/

“Black Britons and the Politics of Belonging:  An Interview with Kennetta Hammond Perry,” with Reena Goldthree, African American Intellectual History Society Blog, February, 2016:  http://www.aaihs.org/black-britons/.  This interview was also featured on Public Books and was published in the Journal of Pan African Studies in December, 2016.

Book Reviews

Review of Felix Germain.  Decolonizng the Republic:  African and Caribbean Migrants in Postwar Paris, 1946-1974 (East Lansing:  Michigan State University Press, 2016) in New West Indian Guide (January, 2018).

Review of Marc Matera, Black London:  The Imperial Metropolis and Decolonization in the Twentieth Century (Berkeley:  University of California Press, 2015) in American Historical Review (June, 2017).

Review of Alexander Byrd, Captives and Voyagers:  Black Migrants in the Eighteenth Century Atlantic World (Baton Rouge:  Louisiana State University Press) in Journal of World History (March, 2012).

Review of Susan Pennybacker From Scottsboro to Munich:  Race and Political Culture in 1930s Britain (Princeton:  Princeton University Press, 2009) in Atlantic Studies 8, 1 (2011).

Review of Boyce-Davies, Carol Left of Karl Marx:  The Political Life of Black Communist Claudia Jones (Durham:  Duke University Press, 2007) in Twentieth Century British History (March, 2009).

Research interests/expertise

Black British History

Race, Racism and Empire

Transnational Race Politics

Black Europe: Europe and the African Diaspora

Race, Migration and Citizenship Black Women's History

Areas of teaching

Black British History

Black Atlantic History

Black Europe

Black Women's History

African and African American Studies


B.A. History & Political Science (Magnum Cum Laude), North Carolina Central University PhD, Comparative Black History, Michigan State University

Membership of professional associations and societies

Association of Black Women Historians

North American Conference of British Studies

American Historical Association

Phi Alpha Theta History Honor Society


"David Oluwale and the Alchemy of Policing Blackness in Britain" (book-length study)

"The Archive of Black Life in Britain and the Architecture of State Power" (book-length study)

"Black Beauty and the Archive: Studio Portraiture, Gender and the Image of Postcolonial Black Britain" (article-length study)

"Angela Davis on Trial in the British Press" (article-length study) Textures of Blackness in the Midlands Archiving Project

Dr Kenetta Hammond Perry, Director of the Stephen Lawrence Research Centre, De Montfort University, Leicester