Penny Red: Notes from the New Age of Dissent
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In the space of a year, Laurie Penny has become one of the most prominent voices of the new left. This book brings together her diverse writings, showing what it is to be young, angry and progressive in the face of an increasingly violent and oppressive UK government.
Penny Red: Notes from the New Age of Dissent collects Penny's writings on youth politics, resistance, feminism and culture. Her journalism is a unique blend of persuasive analysis, captivating interviews and first-hand accounts of political direct action. She was involved in all the key protests of 2010/2011, including the anti-fees demos in 2010 and the anti-cuts protests of spring 2011, often tweeting live from the scene of kettles and baton charges. An introduction and extensive footnotes allow Penny to connect all the strands of her work, showing the links between political activism and wider social and cultural issues.
This book is essential for understanding what motivates the new generation of activists, writers and thinkers that bring creativity, energy and urgency to the fight against capitalism and exploitation.
has become a global obsession.12 One can hardly open a newspaper without reading another gushing interview with a teenager battling the disease, or turn on the television without seeing another gruesome documentary blithely illustrated with pictures of pouting, half-naked waifs, featured just before speculation over what Victoria Beckham didn’t have for breakfast. The press might not admit it, but anorexia is in fashion. The anorexia industry, for which poor Caro was briefly the mascot, is
was striking was that when we took trips to the shops in our new gladrags, both of us felt immensely liberated: our bodies were finally our own, hers to show off as she pleased, mine to cover if I wanted. For the first time since puberty, I felt that people might be seeing the real me, rather than looking at my body. This flavour of freedom, which for some women is central to self-respect, is just as valid and important a choice as the freedom to go bare-legged and low-cut. A truly progressive
yes, the timing is to do with the Royal Wedding, saying, ‘We’ve got to protect people.’ Despite protests from neighbours, eventually all the occupants of Ratstar are arrested, and the royal couple can rest safe in the knowledge that they are being protected from cooking workshops and mother-and-toddler yoga sessions. As squatters and anti-cuts protesters were being dragged out of their homes all over the country, pupils at my old alma mater, Brighton College – an exclusive private school on the
and nice guys obscure the subtle matrix of real-world misogyny. Real misogyny requires a sustained and subtle response. And real sexism, unfortunately, can’t always be solved with the judicious application of a Taser and a tattoo gun. PICKLING DISSENT 24 March 2011 The modern resistance movement has been cannibalised by capital with astonishing speed – from bank campaigns urging potential customers to ‘join the revolution, to Vice magazine’s decision to stage an ‘edgy’ fashion shoot in the
installations in vinyl and ink on the theme of capital and complicity. Meanwhile, delegates at the Turner Prize party munch on very expensive miniature snacks, cannibalising greasy crumbs of the caustic pre-crash self-reflexion industry. Behind the screen, the children’s crusade is screaming to be allowed some semblance of a secure future. On the other side of the looking-glass, as the well-heeled cultural elite of the Blair era drift in lazy pirouettes of ironic self-regard, the prize-winner,