Immigrants and British Labour's Response, 1870-1950

Kenneth Lunn looks at the dynamics of the labour movement's reaction to new migrants.

Most considerations of the British labour movement's responses to immigration have been concerned with attitudes directed towards New Commonwealth migrants arriving in Britain after 1945. Studies before this date have generally been sketchy introductions to the later period. Since attitudes towards blacks in Britain are the product of a long history of racial stereotyping, discrimination and racism, this emphasis is not surprising. Given current attempts to define the presence of blacks and Asians in contemporary Britain as a race relations 'problem' the concentration of analysis on the origins of that problem is also understandable.

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