Teacher and writer Jeffrey Boakye, sitting in for Michael Rosen, and poet and writer JJ Bola, look at the construction of black masculinity in contemporary society and the impact of colonialism. They explore how language is used to define or constrain male identity and ask how modern society might transcend these inherited ideas. If you're not a roadman or a baller, who are you?
Producer Beth O'Dea. Photo copyright: Antonio Olmos
More about Jeffrey Boakye and JJ Bola:
Jeffrey Boakye is an author, commentator, writer and English teacher. He has a particular interest in issues surrounding education, race and popular culture.
Jeffrey, originally from Brixton in London, has taught English to 11- to 18-year-olds since 2007. He began teaching in West London, moved to East London where he was Head of English, and then moved on to Yorkshire where he now lives with his wife and two sons.
Jeffrey started writing his first book, Hold Tight, in 2015 when cradling his first born son in the early hours. Hold Tight was published in 2017 and is recognised as one of the first seminal books on grime music. He started writing his second book, Black, Listed, when cradling his second born son in the early hours. Published in 2019, Black, Listed was praised by David Lammy MP as ‘a book that gives a voice to those whose experience is persistently defined, refined and denied by others’. Jeffrey’s third book, What is Masculinity?, a book for children on masculinity, broke with tradition and was not written when cradling a newborn son.
JJ Bola's website is jjbola.com, twitter: https://twitter.com/JJ_Bola, instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jj_bola and facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jjbola
You can listen to Jeffrey Boakye's conversation with Michael Rosen on Word of Mouth here: