- Gulamhussein Visram Somjee 1906–1991
Born in Zanzibar
Rozina Visram (BA Hons. History, London; Dip. Ed., Makerere) was born in Zanzibar.
After a teaching career in East Africa, she came to Britain in 1969 for postgraduate studies at Edinburgh University where she gained her M.Litt., and later Diploma in the Role of Language in Education (London). She was for many years teacher and head of history at a large London comprehensive and later advisory teacher for history and intercultural education. She was a Teacher Fellow at the Institute of Education, London University for 1983-84. After 1990 she lectured part-time at the Institute of Education, London University and the University of North London (now London Metropolitan).
Historian of the Asian presence in Britain, her major publications are Ayahs, Lascars, and Princes: Indians in Britain 1700-1947 (1986) and Asians in Britain: 400 Years of History (2002) which challenged the accepted version of Asian migration to Britain. She has also written books for schools and contributed to several publications, including the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.
Rozina Visram co-authored a pioneering report for the Geffrye Museum on presenting histories in a diverse society (1988). She was an adviser and researcher for the Museum of London’s Peopling of London: Fifteen Thousand Years of Settlement from Overseas exhibition and project (1991-93), a milestone in the field of musealisation of immigration. She has worked as an adviser and researcher for several institutions and served on the Board of Trustees for Tara Arts and the South Asian Diaspora Literature and Arts Archive (SALIDAA, now SADAA).
In 2006 she was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by the Open University. She was a consultant for the AHRC-funded research projects, Making Britain: South Asian Visions of Home and Abroad, 1870-1950 (2007-2010) and Beyond the Frame: Indian British Connections 1850-1950 (2011-2012).
BA (Hons), History, University of London, UK
Dip. Ed. Makerere, Kampala, Uganda
M. Litt, Edinburgh University, UK
Areas of Research / Professional Expertise
- History of Migration of Blacks and Asians
- Asians in Britain, 1600-1950
- Museum and Archive Studies
In her retirement, she is learning painting and drawing.