British poet and political activist Benjamin Zephaniah dies at age 65


Benjamin Zephaniah, a British dub poet and political activist who drew inspiration from his Caribbean roots, has died

ByThe Associated Press

December 7, 2023, 7:13 AM

FILE - Benjamin Zephaniah performs on stage during the One Big No anti-war concert, at Shepherd's Bush Empire in London, on March 15, 2003. Zephaniah, the British dub poet and political activist who drew huge inspiration from his Caribbean roots, has died. He was 65. In a statement on Instagram, his family said Zephaniah died Thursday Dec. 7, 2023 after being diagnosed with a brain tumor eight weeks ago. (Yui Mok/PA via AP, File)

FILE – Benjamin Zephaniah performs on stage during the One Big No anti-war concert, at Shepherd’s Bush Empire in London, on March 15, 2003. Zephaniah, the British dub poet and political activist who drew huge inspiration from his Caribbean roots, has died. He was 65. In a statement on Instagram, his family said Zephaniah died Thursday Dec. 7, 2023 after being diagnosed with a brain tumor eight weeks ago. (Yui Mok/PA via AP, File)

The Associated Press

LONDON — Benjamin Zephaniah, a British dub poet and political activist who drew huge inspiration from his Caribbean roots, has died. He was 65.

In a statement on Instagram, his family said Zephaniah died Thursday after being diagnosed with a brain tumor eight weeks ago. The statement was confirmed by his agent, Jodie Hodges.

“We shared him with the world and we know many will be shocked and saddened by this news,” the family said.

Zephaniah, who was born in Birmingham on April 15, 1958, is best known for his work on racism, refugees and healthy eating. He also appeared on the popular BBC television show Peaky Blinders.

“Benjamin was a true pioneer and innovator, he gave the world so much,” the family said. “Through an amazing career including a huge body of poems, literature, music, television, and radio, Benjamin leaves us with a joyful and fantastic legacy.”



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