Radical History Zone @ the Anarchist Bookfair

rhz-2015-posterOnce again this year on Saturday 25 April, comrades from the Bristol Radical History Group have taken on organising a small Radical History Zone as a part of the Bristol anarchist bookfair.

Again they’ll be based at Hydra Bookshop all day, which is at 34 Old Market, Bristol BS2 0EZ – just a 5 minute walk from Trinity Centre – and running a series of 6 meetings starting at 12noon.

Hydra naturally also sells books, and coffee & cake!  Meanwhile a few of BRHG will also be running a bookstall up at the Bookfair in the Trinity Centre (on the 1st floor) – do check out their excellent series of local radical history pamphlets!

Here is the full RHZ programme, you can also find it on the BRHG website, download it here as a pdf RHZ_full info and indeed as a Facebook event.

12-1: Merilyn Moos: Siegi Moos and the Anti-Nazi Movement in pre-War Germany (author talk)
Siegi Moos was an active anti-Nazi from 1928-1933 in Berlin, a time which ended with the Nazis gaining power and Siegi going underground, before escaping Germany altogether. Little publicity is given to anti-Nazi movement in Germany, which Siegi’s activities shed light on. Although many of the organisations which make up this movement were originally established or supported by the German Communist Party (KPD), they were in practice semi-autonomous.

Indeed, the Red Front, a crucial – and from 1929, illegal – organisation of which Siegi was an active member, and which was key in protecting working class communities against both the growing strength of the SA and the police, was far more alert to the Nazi threat than, Merliyn suggests, the Central Committee of the KPD. Merilyn attributes Siegi’s greater awareness to his growing up in Bavaria and witnessing first the rise and fall of the Soviet Republic in 1918/19 and then the rise and rise of the ultra-right.’

1-2: “Mac” McConnell: Housing Activism and Squatting in 1970’s Bristol
(talk with short film)
Mac will begin by giving a brief personal/political history of what motivated him to get involved. He will be covering the squatting campaign that took place between 1972-1974 in Ashley Road Bristol, and direct action taken like the occupation of The South West Electricity Board showrooms (SWEB) for example.

Includes a screening of 18-minute documentary The Law Breakers (1973). The BBC West documentary will feature previously homeless single parent families, a support meeting by ‘Bristol Squatters’ Association,’ and an interview with the then council housing chief, Bill Graves.

2-3: Diarmaid Kelliher: Cultures of Solidarity and the 1984-5 Miners’ Strike
(talk with short film)
All Out! Dancing in Dulais! tells the story of London Lesbians and Gays Support the Miners, a group which twinned with a mining community in South Wales. The inspiration for the recent film Pride, it is one of many examples of grassroots film-making during the 1984-5 British miners’ strike.

After watching the documentary, we will discuss the broad range of solidarity activism during one of the most significant strikes in British labour history: trade unionists, feminists, black activists and others created a diverse support movement alongside the industrial struggle. We will explore the roots of this activism in longer histories of connections and cultures of solidarity.

3-4: Bristol Radical History Group: Strikers, Hobblers, Conchies and Reds: A Radical History of Bristol 1880-1939 by Roger Ball, Steve Hunt and Mike Richardson
(book launch)
Members of our very own Bristol Radical History Group will share some choice snippets from their research as an appetiser to promote their new publication, the group’s first book-length collaboration.
More info here

4-5: Anthony Iles and Tom Roberts: All Knees and Elbows of Susceptibility and Refusal: Reading History From Below
(talk and discussion led by authors)
Published in 2012, All Knees and Elbows critically surveys tendencies which sought to uncover the agency of ‘ordinary’ people in challenging capitalism and developing different forms of social organisation.

All Knees and Elbows engages the work of a number of British and international left historians and groups, including Silvia Federici, History Workshop, Eric Hobsbawm, C.L.R James, Peter Linebaugh, Sheila Rowbotham, Jacques Rancière and E.P. Thompson. Anthony Iles and Tom Roberts will introduce some themes from the book, and try to start a discussion on history and obstinacy in the present.

5-6.30: Tracing Movements: Resistance Struggles against Immigration Controls in Europe
(films followed by discussion)
Tracing Movements is a collection of films documenting struggles against immigration controls in Europe. At RHZ, we will be screening two films:

Patra, Dead End relates the campaigns to stop the destruction of migrant camps in the port-town of Patra, Greece. Today, migrants continue to live in limbo, with no chance of gaining in Greece, and stopped from continuing their westward journey.

Across the Adriatic in the fields of southern Italy, seasonal migrant workers live segregated from Italian society. The Invisible Workforce explores the obstacles migrant workers face attempting to organise together.
More info here

Trinity to Hydra in 5 minutes!
Trinity to Hydra in 5 minutes!


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