I discovered Barack Obama in the pages of a Sunday supplement, while sitting in a doctor’s waiting room. A year later, he was running for president. Continue reading
Amy Winehouse, Another Day in the Death of America, BFI Stars, Blondie, British Witches of Sussex, Elena Ferrante, F.A. Mannan, Frances Farmer, Frantumaglia, Gary Younge, I'm Not In the Band, Jean Rhys, Journalism, Julie Christie, Lana Del Rey, Letters, Lyndsy Spence, Margaret Lockwood, Melanie Bell, Natalie Wood, Nathalie Leger, Peter Shelley, Rebecca Sullivan, Suite For Barbara Loden, Sylvia Patterson
British journalist Gary Younge has a sharp eye for how political events impact on ordinary lives. While living in Chicago, he investigated the stories behind the blunt statistics of ten children and teenagers shot dead in a single day. Never intrusive, but quietly devastating, Another Day in the Death of America illuminates with rare power. Continue reading
Refugee Radio is a Brighton-based human rights charity. Their projects include a weekly radio show, live events and media training, as well as mentoring, a post-traumatic resilience panel, and a cookery group. Refugee Radio Times, a new book, was compiled by Stephen Silverwood, the charity’s chief executive, and Lorna Stephenson, who also edits a monthly newsletter of the same name. The book includes personal testimonies from refugees, asylum seekers and other migrants, alongside journalism and analysis by human rights campaigners. Continue reading
The recent death of Margaret Thatcher – who dominated British politics during my formative years – has inspired a new blog, Life Under Thatcher, in which contributors share memories of how Thatcherism affected their lives.
My personal post can be read here. If you would like to write for this blog, submit via Tumblr or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Angry art for troubled times: found on a wall outside the Cobbler’s Thumb pub, New England Street, Brighton. The (anonymous) rhyme dates from the 17th century, protesting against land enclosure and rural dispossession.
Alan Corkish, Alan Morrison, Anne Sexton, Brighton, Caroline Lucas, Cuts, Emergency Verse, George Orwell, Keith Armstrong, Mick Moss, Naomi Foyle, Niall McDevitt, Pen Kease, PJ Harvey, Poetry, Protest
The UK’s general election of May 2010 produced no overall majority, and for the first time since 1945, a coalition was formed by the Conservative Party and the Liberal Democrats, with David Cameron and Nick Clegg taking the roles of Prime Minister and Deputy. Chancellor George Osborne swiftly proposed the most radical cuts to public services in a generation, in order to repay a national deficit estimated at £7.5 billion, and following the worldwide economic crisis that began in 2007.
Between the coalition’s Emergency Budget, and its Comprehensive Spending Review four months later, a palpable sense of unease brewed among many ordinary people. Autumn saw widespread student marches and occupations, while campaigning groups like UK Uncut staged ‘sit-ins’ at high street stores including Vodafone and Top Shop, in protest at corporate tax evasion.
During this period, the poet and editor, Alan Morrison, collected submissions for a new anthology, Emergency Verse: Poetry in Defence of the Welfare State. As reported in The Guardian, it was released initially as an E-book, and a print edition was subsequently launched at London’s Poetry Library in January 2011. Continue reading
Today is a UK-wide day of protest against the proposed cuts to public libraries. I have been a library user since I was a little girl, and I still visit at least once a week, to borrow books for myself and my children. Libraries educate, and entertain us, and our country will be poorer without them. This is a false economy and as the recession bites, we must protect our public services.
Full coverage of today’s events at The Guardian