Street Farming

Bristol Anarchist Bookfair Radical History Zone 2011 Poster
Peter Crump was a member of Street Farm, a London-based collective of anarchist architects and designers working in the early 1970s. They published Street Farmer, an underground paper that, alongside mutating tower blocks, cosmic tractors and sprouting one-way signs, put forward manifestos for the radical transformation of urban living. They offered a powerful vision of green cities in the control of ordinary people (and ordinary sheep), not capitalist, statist, socialist or any other kind of […]

Italy In The 1970s: Bodies In The Street, A Tale Of A Country Like Ours

Life Before Thatcher
In the 1970s, Italy came to the brink of revolution, the most widespread assault on state power Western Europe had seen since the Spanish revolution. Every aspect of the state’s functioning was aggressively challenged. Millions of people were actively imposing their demands - workers, students, women. New ways of doing politics were developed including strikes, wildcats, student revolts, armed struggle and people having fun. These are all part of the story. The history of Italian radicalism in […]

Drowning on Dry Land: Swansea’s Jack Kerouac

From working-class Wales through drugs, gambling and prison to punk, Paris fashion houses and San Francisco’s underground, Ray Jones editor of the notorious ‘Roughler’ magazine recounts his surreal life. So if chatting up Marianne Faithfull and rat arsing it with Keith Moon and Joe Strummer takes your fancy then Ray’s yer man. Watch this talk: If you see this text the video has failed to play. Please let us know by emailing brh@brh.org.uk.

Anarchism in Bristol and the West Country to 1950

Steve Hunt looks at home-grown anarchism, with its roots in a tradition of West Country radicalism. Many colourful and inspiring characters believing in ‘The Cause’ were here. So let’s put on our black cloaks and wide-brimmed flowerpot hats and wander down to the coffeehouses of 1880s Bristol to see who was around. Talk will launch Steve's pamphlet of the same title. If you see this text the video has failed to play. Please let us know by emailing brh@brh.org.uk.

‘Every Cook Can Govern’: From Athens to the Electoral Lottery

Cheerleaders for parliamentary democracy often hark back semi-legendary ‘golden ages’ as a foundation of the modern electoral process. Do these myths have any basis in reality and what relevance do they have today? Dan Bennett uncovers the hidden history of Athenian popular democracy and proposes a modern alternative. Watch this talk: If you see this text the video has failed to play. Please let us know by emailing brh@brh.org.uk.

‘Every Cook Can Govern’ From Athens To Westminster?

Proponents of parliamentary democracy often hark back semi-legendary ‘golden ages’ as a foundation of universal enfranchisement. Do these myths have any basis in reality and what relevance do they have today? Dan Bennett and Tony Dyer follow a historical path from ancient Athens via Anglo-Saxon participatory democracy through to the French Revolution. Dave Cullum poses the question, is representative democracy necessary for modern capitalism to exist? Every Cook Can Govern Daniel Bennett's talk […]

Political Assassins

Avengers & Madmen - Propagandists Of The Deed & The Dawn Of Modern Terrorism - Matt Carr The author of the controversial (and banned) history of terrorism, The Infernal Machine, looks at the anarchist assassins of the late 19th century. Carr considers how such attacks were perceived by their protagonists and spectators, and how the heroic template that they developed has been reproduced in various other contexts. Author of The Infernal Machine – A History of Terrorism*, the first edition […]

‘Robbing Banks Is An Honour For Me’

An Audience With Lucio Urtubia

As a tasty hors d'oeuvre to Bristol Radical History Week 2008 we are extremely pleased to present Lucio Urtubia, anarchist, bank robber, forger, fugitive and above all bricklayer. Lucio’s life is the stuff of legend. As an activist in 1950s Paris he counted André Breton and Albert Camus amongst his friends, worked with anarchist guerrilla Francisco Sabate in attempting to bring down Franco’s fascist regime and carried out numerous bank robberies to fund the struggle to free Spain. In 1977, after […]

The Given Day

By Denis Lehane
The Given Day
Italian Anarchist, Galleanists, Latvian revolutionaries, Bolsheviks, communists, NAACP, Irish cops and gangsters thrown together into a mix with immigration, racism, corruption, strikes, riot and class warfare as a city goes into meltdown leading up to the Boston police strike of 1919. Two main characters are Danny Coughlin, Irish and son of one of Boston’s most powerful police captains and Luther Lawrence, poor and black, and on the run from racism and the mob. While Danny wrestles with his […]

Anarchism in Bristol and the West Country to 1950

Anarchism in Bristol and the West Country Front Cover
Firstly some firsts. Bristol M.P. Edmund Burke was the author of what was perhaps the first anarchist tract; Westcountryman Henry ‘Orator’ Hunt first pioneered the use of the mass platform for ‘rabblerousing’ against the establishment; Bristol was the home of the first avowedly atheistic journal. This is a survey of home-grown anarchism, with its roots in a tradition of West Country radicalism. By the end of the Nineteenth Century explicitly anarchist sensibilities had already emerged as […]

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