Guardian readers respond to Afua Hirsch’s call for a London memorial to the victims of slaveryThank you for the article by Afua Hirsch (Britain was built on the backs of slaves, 23 October). I am 77. As a child in the 1940s, I was proud that vast areas of the world map were coloured pink, and amazed that the language that was spoken in many of them was named after the apparently little country that I lived in. In my teens (by which time most of the pink had gone) I worked as a cleaner in my local hospital as a holiday job, and brought a recently arrived Caribbean nurse home for a meal. I was embarrassed that, although my parents tried to be welcoming to her, they were unable to behave and speak to her in a natural manner.
In retrospect I recognised that they saw her as “other” before they saw her as a lonely young woman in a strange country.