This is the last article you can read this month
You can read more article this month
You can read more articles this month
Sorry your limit is up for this month
THE government is seeking to “airbrush” Britain’s racist and colonial past, unions representing museum staff warned today.
In a joint letter to museum bosses, Prospect, the FDA and PCS said that their members were “deeply worried” that the government was challenging the independence of heritage bodies to provoke an unnecessary “culture war” over the portrayal of historical figures.
The union’s intervention comes as Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden is expected to warn some of the country’s biggest museums against focusing on Britain’s imperial history after telling the so-called Common Sense Group of Tory MPs that the country should not “run from [its] history.”
The unions are urging the National Museum Directors Council (NMDC), which represents major national and regional museums, to stand firm against government interference.
Their letter to the council, which has been seen by the Guardian, says: “Our members are deeply worried that government policy and a seeming desire to ride roughshod over the arm’s-length principle will lead heritage bodies to row back from some of the important work that has been carried out to develop an understanding of our cultural heritage.”
PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka told the Morning Star: “It is disgraceful that government ministers are trying to airbrush out Britain's colonial past for political purposes.”
He accused ministers of trying to “weaponise history and threaten academic freedom.”
Mr Dowden is under pressure from some Tory MPs who see movements such as Black Lives Matter (BLM) as a threat to traditional interpretations of British history, which campaigners have called “whitewashed.”
Last week, Home Secretary Priti Patel described the BLM protests which swept the country last summer as “dreadful” and Commons leader Jacob Rees-Mogg also accused London’s Labour Mayor Sadiq Khan of overseeing “loony left-wing wheezes” after he promised to improve diversity in the capital’s public spaces.
The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport has been approached for comment.
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by joining the 501 club.
Just £5 a month gives you the opportunity to win one of 17 prizes, from £25 to the £501 jackpot.
By becoming a 501 Club member you are helping the Morning Star cover its printing, distribution and staff costs — help keep our paper thriving by joining!
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by become a member of the People’s Printing Press Society.
The Morning Star is a readers’ co-operative, which means you can become an owner of the paper too by buying shares in the society.
Shares are £1 each — though unlike capitalist firms, each shareholder has an equal say. Money from shares contributes directly to keep our paper thriving.
Some union branches have taken out shares of over £500 and individuals over £100.
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by donating to the Fighting Fund.
The Morning Star is unique, as a lone socialist voice in a sea of corporate media. We offer a platform for those who would otherwise never be listened to, coverage of stories that would otherwise be buried.
The rich don’t like us, and they don’t advertise with us, so we rely on you, our readers and friends. With a regular donation to our monthly Fighting Fund, we can continue to thumb our noses at the fat cats and tell truth to power.
Donate today and make a regular contribution.