Since being published in September 2012, Hsaio-Hung Pai’s ‘Scattered Sand’ has been widely acclaimed, both in the broadsheets and on the political left. This is no mean feat – at a time when there are a plethora of books on China being released, the book has stood out as an important and original contribution, accessible to the new reader on China and yet original enough to interest people more engaged in the debate. As if to confirm that wide appeal, last month it was shortlisted for the Bread and Roses Award for Radical Publishing.
Considering everything that is going on in the world right now, from European-wide General Strikes to the tax avoiders on our own doorsteps, who's up for a Radical Christmas? With a bit of imagination and research, it is possible to avoid the bigger culprits of tax avoidance and union busting and enjoy a more politically healthy and inspiring Christmas
Oh no not another 'Book of the Month' I hear you say. Aha, I hear myself say, 'not just any Book of the Month - this is the People's Book of the Month'. Not for this bookshop, the trotting out of the latest door-stopping blockbuster.
There is an alternative to austerity. There is no lack of wealth and resources in our country that we can draw upon to tackle this recession. The problem is that this wealth and these resources are held in the hands of too few people and are not being used productively to create the growth and jobs we need. If we can release these resources, we can overcome the current recession and start to build a prosperous future for our country, linking with others across Europe and the United States to overcome this global economic gridlock.
David Graeber’s ‘Debt: The First 5,000 Years’ wins Bread and Roses Award for Radical Publishing 2012
[From the Alliance of Radical Booksellers website] In the centenary year of the infamous Bread and Roses strike, the Alliance of Radical Booksellers is proud to announce the winner of the first annual Bread and Roses Award for Radical Publishing. David Graeber’s ‘Debt: The First 5,000 Years’ clinched the prize in the final hour, following a reported deadlock between the guest judges.
As well as run the bookshop, I'm heavily involved and wholeheartedly committed to the trade union movement, as some of you will no doubt have noticed. Towards the end of last year, I became secretary of a new Trades Council, based in Durham. The County Durham Trades Union Council represents unionised workers across County Durham and aims to build links with community groups in order to campaign for a better society, both within and outside work. This is my report on our latest collaborative event - Workers Memorial Day, held on the 28th April each year:
A week or so ago, I was kindly taken by the Northern Echo to see the biopic of Margaret Thatcher, 'The Iron Lady'. I was to be accompanied by a Tory councillor, who, I was reliably informed, was a fan of Thatcher. The idea was that we would watch the film and have a good, old fashioned ding dong afterwards, with the journalist frantically scribbling away as we traded insults about the legacy of possibly the most divisive figure in British politics. I agreed to do it, despite the fact that many of my friends and political compadres were pledging to boycott the film
Top 10 best selling new books, from the People's Bookshop Durham & second hand books that have sold in multiples over 2011
Tomorrow I will be joining fellow radical booksellers in Liverpool to discuss ways of supporting and promoting radical bookselling in the UK. Nik Gorecki of Housemans Bookshop in King's Cross has been one of the main movers in getting this off the ground. Below he explains the reasoning behind the launch of the Alliance of Radical Booksellers
Visitors to the People's Bookshop will have noticed that it is, in part at least, a tribute to Anthony Wedgewood Benn. I make no apology for this. I think Tony Benn has made the most enormous contribution to the politics of resistance over the last 3 decades and deserves to be regarded as the grandfather of the movement
„The oldest books are still only just out to those who have not read them”