The Reading List: Strikes
Monday 27 June 2011
In Dubious Battle by John Steinbeck, Penguin Modern Classics £14.99
Steinbeck's novel about politics and labour in the United States, In Dubious Battle, is set in California apple farming country, where a strike by migrant workers spirals out of control, becoming a bloody clash of ideologies.
Events are seen through the eyes of Jim Nolan, a disillusioned young man who joins the Communists and – at least initially – stokes the strike's furnaces.
The Enemy Within: Thatcher's Secret War Against The Miners by Seumas Milne, Verso Books £12.99
In this ground-breaking study, Milne reveals the extreme lengths to which the Conservative government was prepared to go to crush the miner's union. MI5 and police Special Branch were using phoney bank deposits, forged documents and agents provocateurs to trap their targets.
Tube Strike Haiku by Roger McGough, Copyright Roger McGough
Inspired by last autumn's tube strikes, McGough penned two works: "A Striking Soliloquy" and "Tube strike Haiku". The Haiku sees the tube trains affected by the commuters' distress while the tracks, like the striking workers, are said to be "enjoying the holiday/mice minding the gap". www.rogermcgough.org.uk
Out Of This Furnace by Thomas Bell, University of Pittsburgh Press £15.50
Set in a steel town just outside Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Bell's work draws upon the experience of his own immigrant ancestors. Following the fate of a family of Austrian immigrants over three generations, it focuses on three pivotal strikes in America's history: the Homestead strikes of 1892, and the Great Steel Strike of 1919. Published in 1941, it fell out of print until being reissued in the 1970s. Since then it has been an American History staple.
GB84 by David Peace, Faber and Faber £8.99
Part fact, part fiction, Peace offers an epic tale of invented drama punctuated by real events and featuring real people. While the State is portrayed as unpleasant and aggressive, the National Union of Mineworkers and its leader Arthur Scargill are shown to be corrupt, incompetent and riddled with rivalries. The victims are the ordinary miners.
'At times I thought he was me'film
Review: One Direction, Fourmusic
Review: The World of Ice and Firebooks
Film More romcom than S&M
Review: The Imitation Gamefilm
Comedy...to show her mastectomy scars
TVNetflix gets cryptic
TV review A moving film showing kids too busy to enjoy their youth
Books Not even a Man Booker prize could save Richard Flanagan from a nomination
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Universities aren't working us hard enough, say undergraduates
- 2 Lego letter from the 1970s still offers a powerful message to parents 40 years later
- 3 To help fuel their propaganda machine against the poor, our government has now decided to redefine the word 'welfare'
- 4 Woman opens professional cuddling shop – gets 10,000 customers in first week
- 5 Grayson Perry: London needs affordable housing because 'rich people don't create culture'
Strictly Come Dancing 2014 results: Steve Backshall and Ola Jordan sent home
Iggy Azalea responds to Eminem rape lyrics: 'I'm bored of old men threatening young women'
British culture 'flatlining' as funds dwindle, says academic
Tom DeLonge compares streaming music to killing elephants
Marilyn Manson denies involvement in shocking leaked footage from Lana Del Rey rape video
Rochester by-election: Ukip gains second MP as Tory defector Mark Reckless holds seat
'Beast of Bolsover' Dennis Skinner takes Ukip MP Mark Reckless to task moments after he is sworn in
Rochester by-election: Labour MP Emily Thornberry resigns after posting white van and England flags tweet
France 'blocks' Russian sailors from boarding a warship
Rochester aftermath: Sacking of Emily Thornberry will make work of Labour MPs '10 times harder'
Revealed: How the world gets rich – from privatising British public services