Within their halls, the thirty-one colleges at the University of Cambridge contain portraits, sculptures, and texts memorializing notable Cantabs. Among these, however, alumni of African descent are markedly absent. Launched in October 2015, the Black Cantabs Project is combing the archives and rewriting Black alumni into the history of this centuries-old institution. Ayiba’s Debbie Onuoha spoke to the project’s co-founders about recovering the often lost or forgotten stories of Cambridge’s Black graduates, from 1849 to the present.
Njoki Wamai is a final-year Kenyan PhD student reading politics at Queen’s College and Nnenda Chinda is a Nigerian-Italian who recently graduated with a BA in classics from Downing College.