Powerful Northern Women

Olive Morris

Olive Morris was a black radical feminist, passionate about eradicating racial, sexual and class oppression. Olive tragically passed away at the young age of 27 years-old but left behind a legacy of activism, campaigning and change.

Education

Olive was born in Jamaica in 1952 and moved to England when she was nine-years-old. Despite leaving school with no qualifications, Olive went on to study at the London College of Printing and in the 1970s attended the University of Manchester where she studied for a degree in social sciences.

Activism

Olive co-founded the Brixton Black Women’s Group and the Organisation of Women of Asian and African Descent (OWAAD), as well as becoming a core member of the British Black Panthers. She was known for being the centre of squatters campaign and Olive’s picture would appear on the front of the Squatter’s Handbook in 1976.

Manchester was an influential place and period of Olive’s activism. She was an active member of the Manchester Black Women’s Cooperative and Black Women’s Mutal Aid Group. While in Manchester, Olive also established a supplementary school after campaigning with local black parents for better education for their children.

 

Legacy

Despite Olive’s influence on the communities, she was a part of, there was not much information or history regarding her life. In 2008 the Remembering Olive Collective set up an online resource to keep her memory and legacy alive. The Remember Olive Collective is a fantastic place to read about Olive’s life and activism, as well as interviews with people who knew her.

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