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IDC Mourns the Passing of E. R. Braithwaite


E. R Braithwaite

The Indian Diaspora Council (IDC) joins in solidarity with organizations, institutions, agencies, and individuals in USA, UK, Guyana and other countries in mourning the passing of world renowned writer, academician and diplomat Eustace Ricardo Braithwaite (known as E. R. Braithwaite) who passed away on November 12, 2016 in Maryland, USA. We express our sympathies and convey our condolences to his family, friends and associates.

E R Braithwaite was a Guyanese born writer, teacher and diplomat, best known for his semi-autobiographical book To Sir, With Love (1959) which was adapted into a successful film in 1967 starring Sidney Poitier. He has written a number of books exposing racial discrimination in post-war Britain, all of which were inspired by his personal experiences.

Braithwaite was born in 1912 in Georgetown, British Guiana (now Guyana), to Oxford-educated parents. He attended the elite Queen’s College Guyana and the City College of New York. He volunteered for service with the RAF in 1940 and served as a fighter pilot during World War Two.

After the war he studied at Cambridge, graduating with a Master’s Degree in physics in 1949. He also received honorary doctoral degrees from Oxford University and La Sorbonne - University of Paris. Braithwaite served as Guyana’s Ambassador to the United Nations (4 years) and Guyana’s Ambassador to Venezuela (3 years). In addition, Braithwaite was an educational consultant and lecturer for UNESCO in Paris for 5 years.

E R Braithwaite’s To Sir, With Love captured an era, highlighting the realities of racism and the disillusionment of non-white migrants in 1950s Britain, as well as the book’s appeal and relevance to audiences past and present.


Indian Diaspora Council
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