These are all the subtle ways Noughts + Crosses shows how people of colour experience racism

These are all the subtle ways Noughts + Crosses shows how people of colour experience racism

It’s taken nine years but Malorie Blackman’s bestselling novel, Noughts and Crosses, has finally been adapted for television.

For those unaware, the book imagines a world reversed, where black people are the ruling majority and oppress a white underclass.

It’s against this background that Sephy, a Cross, falls for her childhood friend Callum – a Nought.

But their relationship is illegal and their burgeoning love story is soon swept up in rising terrorism and state brutality.

Since its release, Noughts and Crosses has proved a hugely powerful and clever way to get readers to consider power dynamics and racism in our own society.

For years, people were begging for the story to be realised on television.

And finally, the first of six episodes was screened on BBC 1, to critical acclaim.

Viewers were equally impressed, especially by the level of detail.

For those who have personal experience of everyday racism, certain tiny moments really stood out – and they documented them on social media.

There was subtle but significant mispronunciation of a simple name.

Or the moment when a character was unable to find a plaster that matched their skin colour, inspired by Blackman’s own experience.

In fact, Tesco have just released multi-tone plasters and claim they are the “first” supermarket in the UK to do so. However, they’re facing criticism after a black entrepreneur accused them of copying her product.

People also noted the care taken to build a world that reflects African culture, including characters speaking Yoruba.

And then there was a smart reversal of the little comments black and brown face daily.

Essentially: a lot of the UK need to watchNoughts and Crosses.

Luckily the first three episodes are on BBC iPlayer now. So there's no excuse.

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