Exhibition: Refusing to Kill

Bristol's World War I Conscientious Objectors

The exhibition ‘Refusing To Kill – Bristol’s World War 1 Conscientious Objectors‘ which was in Bristol Cathedral and the Central Library from September 2017 until February 2018 is in Bristol Archives from June 5th until July 14th. The exhibition tells the story of the almost 400 men from Bristol and the surrounding area who, for moral, religious or political reasons, refused to fight in World War 1. Alongside most of the material displayed previously, there will be new exhibits. These include […]

Film Showing: Make More Noise

The suffragettes in struggle

miscellaneous 2018 poster
This fascinating British Film Institute compilation of original footage highlights the passion and media savvy of the suffragettes in struggle, offering a fascinating portrait of British women during this time. “You have to make more noise than anybody else” said Emmeline Pankhurst. A special Bristol Radical History screening to mark the centenary of some women in Britain getting the vote, it will be introduced by Dawn Dyer, librarian at Bristol Central Library, who will provide a Bristol […]

Petition to give Bristol a slave trade memorial & Abolition Shed on Welsh Back NOT another bar!

Sign the petition. Throughout time Bristol has played a key role in events, ideas and literature that have shaped people’s freedom and parliamentary reform. Previously these topics have been neglected because they don’t quite fit the national narrative. The narrative has to change for the 21st Century. By recognising this there’s a great chance Bristol can lead the way. For a fleeting moment there’s a golden opportunity to make it happen; a vital retelling of the role Bristol has played on the […]

1968 events in 2018

Bristol Radical History Festival 2018 Poster Dark Large
As the second Bristol Radical History Festival rapidly approaches, it is also worth doing a shout out for several other 1968 events happening in the coming weeks. Remember-Discover-Research-Critique-Celebrate-Commemorate-Repeat and Exceed the <événements> of May 1968! Here’s a quick round-up, but there will be others.   National and international events (Tuesday 1st May 2018 onwards) Film screenings: ‘1968 Festival. A festival inspired by ‘1968’ and organised by the Radical Film […]

A Brief Political And Economic Introduction To Bristol Glass

There were a number of economic and political changes during the 16th and 17th centuries which prepared the ground for the establishment of the glass industry in Bristol. In 1522 the ‘Society of Merchant Venturers of the City of Bristol’ was incorporated. It grew in power and influence through the 17th century during which the Society revitalised and effectively reorganised itself to allow Bristol’s maritime merchants to take the fullest advantage of the Britain’s developing colonial […]

Studio 2: Strikes, equal pay and workers’ control: the workplace in ’68

Bristol Radical History Festival 2018 Poster Light
    The events of 1968 are often represented by university occupations, protests against the war in Vietnam and the rise of the counter-culture. This however is a partial picture which excludes the aspirations of workers and their organisations in the period. Although action by Trade Unions was improving wages and conditions particularly in large industrial enterprises, the strength of these sections of the working class in Britain was being reflected in new, more radical demands. […]

Political cafes: what is anarchism?

Dr Peter Webb and Dr Stephen Hunt (Of Bristol Radical History Group) will discuss and illustrate the main principles of Anarchism and go through why Anarchist politics may be a suitable framework for thinking about contemporary political, cultural and social issues. We will also give examples of a variety of Anarchist thinkers, the situations they found themselves in and the political decisions that they made, informed by their Anarchist outlook. Anarchism like most political perspectives has […]

Two rebel women

Florence Exten- Hann and Lilian Gertrude Wolfe. Interviewed by Sheila Rowbotham

I interviewed Florence Exten-Hann in March 1973 and this article appeared in the socialist feminist magazine Red Rag (no.3 1973). It draws also on notes she wrote about her life for a Workers’ Educational Association class in 1968. The original article was subsequently reproduced in a collection of my writings, Dreams and Dilemmas, Virago, 1983. I have modified it somewhat for clarity and added some new comments at the end. My article, ‘She Lived Her Politics’ first appeared in the anarchist […]

Level 2: Poster making: make a print poster with Cato Press

Bristol Radical History Festival 2018 Poster Light
Cato Press, Easton’s very own print workshop, continues the tradition and art of relief printmaking. Members of Cato Press will be on hand in the activities and exhibitions area on Level 2 with some radical designs. Be sure to pay them a visit to print your own poster to take away!

Outcasts, Cowards and Quakers – Re-examining the Conscientious Objectors of the First World War

This talk given by Professor Lois Bibbings will consider conventional ideas about objectors alongside an exploration of who these men (and women) were, what they did and why, what happened to them and how they were viewed. A complex picture emerges which takes us a long way from stereotypical images of objectors as, for example, despised, rejected, unmanly, lacking courage and/or devotedly religious. This event is organised by the Bristol Skeptics Society and takes place at the Smoke and Mirrors […]

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