Current issues

Enoch Powell’s “Rivers of Blood” speech addresses the topic of immigration, which is an issue that is still widely debated today. 

Many of Powell’s supporters consider him a visionary and give the example of the 2015 Syrian refugee crisis as an illustration of his predictions. In 2015, over one million immigrants – mostly Syrians – came to Europe in search of asylum. Refugees escaped conflict zones and wars, including the Syrian Civil War (2…


Textual perspectives

To have a better view of the concept of immigration, we advise you to look at two speeches that present opposing attitudes to immigrants. 

Donald Trump’s Immigration Speech from 2016 is similar to Enoch Powell’s “Rivers of Blood” speech from 1968. In his speech, Trump admits that immigration is one of the main problems that the US has to deal with. Trump particularly focuses on illegal immigration to the US, but his speech is, overall, against immigration. He uses similar arguments to those used by Powell, including criticizing the immigration policies developed by his political opponents. Overall, both Trump’s and Powell’s speeches create a negative image of immigration and immigrants.

On a different note, the 2001 “Chicken Tikka Masala” speech by Robin Cook presents arguments that say immigration is good for Britain. Cook mainly celebrates immigration and focuses on the advantages of living in a multicultural society. Unlike Powell, Cook debunks the myth that immigration is a threat to the UK and concludes that the British culture is enriched by immigrants.

You could also take a look at the poem “Colonization in Reverse” written by Louise Bennett-Coverley, a Jamaican poet who has moved to the UK. The poem looks at immigration from Jamaica, a former British colony, to England, a process which she calls “colonization in reverse”. The poem presents the reasons why Jamaicans choose to immigrate to England but also focuses on the real obstacles that immigrants might face.

The poem “Remember the S…

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