Bad Women: The Blackout Ripper BONUS: Black GIs and their “Brown Babies”

Listen On:

  • Apple Podcasts
  • Spotify
  • Apple Podcasts
  • Spotify

Join Pushkin+

Gain access to ad-free versions of 20+ podcasts from the Pushkin library along with exclusive bonus episodes and other member benefits.

Unlike white GIs, it was made virtually impossible for African-American servicemen to marry the women they met and fell in love with in the UK during World War Two. If these couples had children, those so-called “Brown Babies” were stigmatized and scorned – with many ending up in grim children’s homes.

Pausing the story of the Blackout Ripper – this episode examines the experiences of those Black GIs, their white partners and two “Brown Babies” – Leon Lomax and Terry Harrison – who have both spent decades trying to piece together their family histories.

Further reading:

  • Bland, Lucy. Britain’s ‘Brown Babies’: The stories of children born to black GIs and white women in the Second World War. (Manchester University Press), 2019
  • Osur, Alan. Blacks in the Army Air Forces During World War II. (Office of Air Force History), 1977
  • Schindler, David and Westcott, Mark ‘Shocking Racial Attitudes: Black G.I.s in Europe’, The Review of Economic Studies. (University of Oxford), 2021

The Host

Hallie Rubenhold

Hallie Rubenhold is the host of Bad Women: The Ripper Retold. She is an award-winning historian, author, and consultant. Her research has centered on the often-neglected lives of women. Several of…