The Modern Cockney Festival event at RSA House - RSA

The Modern Cockney Festival event at RSA House

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For many groups discrimination is a fact of life. This thought-provoking event, 'Why we need to tackle invisible discrimination: Jews, Ageism, and Cockneys', part of The Modern Cockney Festival, explores how invisible discrimination is still widespread in modern Britain.

The event features four speakers, each offering a different perspective, root causes of discrimination, and lessons for how to move forward to promote greater fairness, tolerance, and social justice.

Three very different groups highlight their experiences, responses, and challenges - the Jewish community, those facing ageism, and Cockneys.

Discover new insights to confront your perceptions and question why things are the way they are, and why they will continue unless we adopt new ways of confronting the invisible chains that bound us.

  • Dave Rich, Director of Policy at the Community Security Trust, campaigns against antisemitism. His new book Everyday Hate: How antisemitism is built into our world - and how you can change it explores how it would be tempting to put antisemitism down to a handful of extremists, yet it endures at an everyday level in the stereotypes and assumptions about Jews that are woven into the fabric of our world. These almost unnoticed prejudices perpetuate violent hatred. Only until we all understand where they came from, how they are sustained and how they can be challenged, they will continue to do so.
  • Dr Aideen Young, Senior Evidence Manager at the Centre for Ageing Better, a charitable foundation campaigning for a society in which everyone enjoys a good later life. She recently wrote the Centre's report Ageism: What's the harm? which highlights how ageism causes deep and lasting harm to people and society, directly and indirectly, exacerbating social divisions and inequalities and damaging our economy. Reducing negative attitudes to ageing is essential for our individual and collective progress as a society.
  • Andy Green, Director of social enterprise Grow Social Capital, and Saif Osmani of the Bengali East End Heritage Society, formed the partnership ‘Cockney Cultures’ to create The Modern Cockney Festival. In their work they uncovered a story of Cockney social identity defined by others. A story featuring tacit discrimination and inaccurate stereotypes of the 660 year-old identity of the ‘common Londoner’. One that presents Cockney as an exclusively white, working-class and in some cases, racist, identity. They celebrate instead, a Cockney self-identity based on inclusive, positive values, and recognising what is called ‘inclusive tribalism’: being who I am, doesn’t stop you being who you are.

This is a free event, part of The Modern Cockney Festival (3 March-4 April), held at the RSA, the royal society for arts, manufactures and commerce. Book your place here: 

Why we need to tackle invisible discrimination: Jews, Ageism, and Cockneys
Wednesday 22 March, 12.30-1.30pm
The Steps, The Coffee House, RSA House, 8 John Adam Street, London WC2N 6EZ