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Cambridge 'Gone with the Wind' ball axed after complaints the film is racist

Vivien Leigh and Clark Gable in a scene from Gone with the Wind. Photo: PA Images

A Cambridge University college has cancelled plans to hold a Gone With The Wind-themed summer ball after complaints the film is racist.

A spokesman for St Edmund's college told The Independent original plans for the St Edmund's May Ball were abandoned after criticism from students.

The Oscar-winning 1939 film starring Clark Gable and Vivien Leigh was widely criticised for the way it portrayed black people and slavery.

Student Mamusu Kallon, who was born in Sierra Leone, told the newspaper:

"It's a film that glamorises the romantic dreams of a slave owner and a KKK member while rendering the horrors of slavery invisible.

"The black characters fulfil every derogatory racist stereotype of the 'slave' and black people continue to be subject to the modern-day versions of these stereotypes. Surely Cambridge University should not perpetuating this?"

The organising committee will instead hold a 'Journey through the Seasons' inspired ball in June, with tickets costing £129.

A college spokesman told the newspaper: "The committee initially selected the theme of Gone With The Wind, but then changed it to 'Journey though the Seasons' after concern was expressed by some of our students.

"The college felt that it would have only been necessary for it to intervene formally if the matter had not been resolved satisfactorily. The college supports the change of theme and is proud of its record of friendliness and cordiality."