Una Marson was a poet, playwright, editor, the first black woman programme maker at the BBC, and an activist.
Marson’s work was anti-colonial, antiracist, working class, feminist and Pan-Africanist. Writing in both English and Jamaican patois, her work addressed the lived realities of working class Jamaicans and the wider Caribbean diaspora community in the UK. She wrote about being a colonial subject who comes to the ‘Motherland’ only to find it alienating and racist. She broke down racist, Eurocentric beauty standards and the negative impacts they have.
Marson took over a BBC radio show, which had been a way for soldiers to send messages to their families, and turned it into Caribbean Voices, a key international platform for Caribbean literature.