Film tie-in event: American Climate Rebels

Visionary grassroots struggle from North America

With post-film discussion with film makers Shaun Dey and Fliss Premra. Desccription from the Cube Microplex: "A screening of films made by video activist collective Reel News during their tour of North America to see what is happening with a climate denying President in charge of the USA. What they found were visionary struggles, with working class communities of colour getting on with implementing a just transition away from fossil fuels themselves through collective action. In these struggles, […]

History walk 2: Romantic, Radical and…Reactionary

Bristol Green Capital or Green Capitol?

This walk explores how ideas of the environment have evolved in the modern imagination. Once described by Marx as the ‘third worst city in England’, Bristol has evolved to be a magnet for environmental activists and contemporary good-lifers. What can the city’s history tell us about environmental struggles, including the right to public green space, the waxing and waning of the harbour’s fortunes, and the changing ideas of environmental menace or nuisance over time? The walk will start at M-Shed […]

Studio 2: Ecology from below

Resisting Enclosure in Rural Somerset and Dorset, 1780-1850

The eighteenth and nineteenth centuries witnessed widespread attempts to ‘privatise’ rural England. By enclosing common land and extinguishing customary rights, rural elites sought to physically reshape and culturally redefine the countryside. In counties such as Somerset and Dorset, labourers increasingly found themselves barred from entering the fields and woodland that had supported their families for generations. Meanwhile, those who attempted to voice their concerns regarding these changes […]

Studio 2: Green Romanticism

Stephen Hunt of the Bristol Radical History Group will start the day with an overview of the ecology movement’s roots in the Romantic era. Industrial capitalism emerged together with the mass exploitation of fossil fuels during the Eighteenth Century. Over the next century it became increasingly apparent that accelerating processes of expansion and extraction threatened many habitats, or even the whole planet. Green Romantic anti-capitalism was an outcome of such processes. The negative social […]

Studio 2: Reflections on Radical Technology in the 1970s

Peter Harper coined the term ‘Alternative Technology’ in 1972 and became Head of Innovation at the Centre for Alternative Technology (CAT). During the mid-1970s, he co-edited Radical Technology, a compendium of ideas for sustainable living. Many of these ideas were showcased at local Comtek (Community Technology) events in Bath, a pioneering national celebration of innovation rolled into lively 1970's pop festivals. "Technology and innovation bring many benefits. They also bring harms, risks and […]

Studio 2: Back to the land

Personal reflections on green and community politics in the 1970s

In 1973 Kath Holden helped found a small commune based on a 135-acre dairy farm in West Wales. She went on to become a smallholder in the same area and disputed her entitlement to common grazing with local farmers, recalling earlier struggles for common-land rights. Later in the decade she volunteered on a farm in the USA, which offered sanctuary for people with mental health difficulties recovering from being in hospital. Inspired by these experiences, she went on to work on one of the earliest […]

Make Rojava Green Again

Building an Ecological Society

By Internationalist Commune of Rojava
The ‘Make Rojava Green Again’ campaign of the Internationalist Commune of Rojava began in early 2018. I am pleased and impressed that they have now published this inspirational book. That such a text is being produced is in itself an expression of hope. It is a most promising development in some of the least promising circumstances. The Internationalist Commune of Rojava rightly states that ‘the ecological crisis has become the most urgent challenge of our time because it touches and impacts all […]

Graham Caine (1945-2018)

Sad news that Graham Caine of Street Farm and the Bristol Gnomes died on 19th September. As well as being the Street Farmer who designed and lived in the first ecological house, Graham was responsible for distinctive Bristolian 'Gnomework' such as St Werburghs City Farm Café and the 'Gnome House’ in Boiling Wells. Graham was a great representative of the 1968 generation and spoke passionately of how the events in Paris 1968 inspired him in England. Meeting fellow Street Farmers Peter Crump and […]

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