Archive for August 2011
YouTube interview post riots – ” Amidst the looting, the violence and the clashes with the police at the London Riots in Hackney… has this guy hit the nail on the head?”
Dazed and Confused interview Iphgenia Baal about her first book ‘The Hardy Tree’. by Stuart Hammond.
Stewart Home curates “Psychedelic Noir: Anthony Joseph and Iphgenia Baal” 11/08/11, part of These Silence Writing Festival, Edinburgh
11 August at 17:30 - 14 August at 16:00
Psychedelic Noir: Anthony Joseph and Iphgenia Baal
Red Lecture Theatre, £4/£3
Iphgenia Baal, author of our first fiction title The Hardy Tree, will appear as part of the line up in the Edinburgh three day writing festival curated by Stewart Home. Unmissable if you are in Edinburgh!
Anthony Joseph has been described as both “blending the diasporic with the avant garde” and “L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E poetry meets Sun Ra”, Joseph’s novel, The African Origin Of UFOs, is accessible but mind expanding. His Afro-futurism encompasses science fiction and folk tales, surreal imagery and neologisms, sudden historical shifts and dexterous verbal riffs on a wide range of musical traditions. An accomplished live performer who recites from memory, Joseph fuses an impressively wide range of genres. He will surprise and delight you. Appearing with him is Iphgenia Baal. Her just published first book, The Hardy Tree, is a genre-bending meditation on graveyards, the gothic, Thomas Hardy and the deep topology of Kings X in London.
For what regards the London riots, who could not see this coming? This is about youths who went beyond what we could ever imagine because of how they grew up. Their family failed them, school failed them, social workers failed them, society failed them. Only the police and jail had something to teach them. Lives spent in crews or gangs fighting each other and the police, going in and out of jail, it needed a member of the community to be shot dead by the police for no reason to enflame all this.
Mark Duggan was killed in Tottenham by a CO19 officer, the special branch that also massacred an innocent Brazilian in the tube sometime back. The published story is he got shot in the chest, the reality seems to be that he was hit in the face, to a level that his mother could not recognise him. When a march was organised by the family to demonstrate against the police lies and worse, their disregard for any inquest, a crowd of about 150 reached the Tottenham Police station in a peaceful demonstration. Police in riot gear came to protect the building, and hit and wounded to the head a young woman. This was the match that put fire to everything. Gangs of youths ready for anything just went for it, all the way as they have been taught to, spreading rapidly to gangs all across the UK. This is what I was able to reconstruct. Lastly the police were really a soft touch managing the riots, compared to the brutality used on political marches in the last couple of years, and I think they really wanted this to get them all, in a sense.
Now they are passing prison sentences to minor aged disaffected kids which will become an army of gangsters a few years from now. Instead of putting them in a school and teaching them love and education. On top of it, we hear a lot of them are losing their housing benefit, pushing them even more outside the boundary of society, and making them even more frustrated and angry. Surely there should be a differentiation in the crimes committed and punishments inflicted, attacking a private flat Mogadishu style is not the same as looting Currys, but the majority should be put on special re-education courses aimed at reconstructing a role in society and hope for the future. Not certainly in closed cages in contact with hardened criminals….