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Abandoned buildings, gold plated capitalism, tarnished silver spoons, queues at food banks and the Flying Dutchman of left wing politics that roams the high seas of Britain beyond distant waves.

February 10, 2016 – 2:56 pm | 2 Comments

The room that I currently write this in will probably no longer be here in a few weeks. The building is going to be torn down. I am a property guardian in a school in central Hackney. What was meant to be six months of accommodation turned out to last …

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Red Rose-tinted Glasses in our Leftist Island of London Engulfed by a Sea of Blue or the Longest Suicide Blog Post in History?

August 30, 2015 – 2:22 pm |

 

UK election map 2015: Labour Party, red, almost entirely engulfed by the, blue, Conservative Party.

Putting personal political perspectives aside, I hate to say that I was right in my prediction that Ed Milliband would not win the last election. But his influence certainly left his mark on the party with the rise of Jeremy Corbyn’s supporters, yet I still feel that it is not enough to resurrect Old Labour policies. The electoral map of 2015, pictured to the left, proves the point that we do live with rose-tinted glasses in our leftist island of London engulfed by a sea of blue.

Jeremy Corbyn is a welcome breath of fresh air in a country being torn apart by austerity, greed and lack of empathy for hard working people of all backgrounds regardless of sexual orientation, colour and creed. Yet do we just have to accept that those of us lefties live in an exceptionally conservative country that will require more backbreaking work to achieve a better sense of equality in these isles?

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The rise and decline of eurosceptic parties and their impact within the EU

April 7, 2015 – 1:31 pm | 2 Comments

Even though some Eurosceptic parties in Europe have seen an ebb within support from voters recently, the changing political landscape could mean that their political presence and influence within the union might be irreversible.
The 2008 recession formed a catalyst for Eurosceptic parties across the political spectrum on the continent. Support …

London Short Film Festival 2015: cats, cool, clever, creepy and some…just plain crap!

January 14, 2015 – 9:40 pm |

It was a cold Tuesday and high above the hustle and bustle of Mare Street people reclined in couches in the Hackney Picture House Cinema to watch the young and the old showcase their films at the LSFF. The festival, which this year ran from 9 to18 January, had been …

The Truth is out there: One Rogue Reporter Documentary Review

June 26, 2014 – 2:08 pm |

 
Press, smut peddlers have their whole operation opened and dissected by Rich Peppiatt, former tabloid reporter, in a new documentary called One Rogue Reporter. Shown as part of the films of the East End Film Festival at the Rio Cinema in Dalston last weekend.
Peppiatt worked for the Daily Star  tabloid until …

A Matter of Chance: The Artist Daniel Ginns and his Evolving Mediums

April 10, 2014 – 12:24 am |

 
 
Daniel Ginns expresses his artistic versatility through continuous line drawings and Mark Rothko wall photos. Recent work was for the Tate Britain as part of a project created by Scottish artist Alan Johnston called Tactile Geometry.
Ginns and I went for a cup of tea to talk about nature over nurture, chance, …

Portrayals of Gang Youth Violence: Two Short Films at the Rio Cinema, London

September 23, 2013 – 4:15 pm |

One of London’s last independent cinemas, the Rio in Dalston, hosted shorts by two visionary women filmmakers at a private screening on Sunday 21 July.
The two directors portrayed gang life in the city through different approaches. Dionne Edwards, 27, from Bristol, who moved to London when she was 18, took …

Alternative Issue: Growing up on an Israeli Military Base and Fighting for Peace

June 24, 2013 – 1:17 pm |

 
In Israel, everyone goes to the military service at the age of 18. But living in military bases before reaching 18 might be quite odd for some people. Nitzan Regev-Sanders, 25, an International Politics and Sociology student at City University, London talks about her extraordinary experience of growing up in …

International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA) 2012: Four Days, Two Smartphones (Video)

June 19, 2013 – 3:31 pm |

 

Our adventures in Amsterdam documented in this video as well as an interview with Slavko Martinov director of the documenatry Propaganda which you can also read about in this review.
Video: Christian Jensen, Text: Mark A. Silberstein, Edit: Jenya Vyaltseva
 
 

Is Dialogue in Bahrain Genuine or just Cosmetic?

May 19, 2013 – 1:55 pm |

 
It has been two years since the start of the uprising in Bahrain.  Back then in 2011, thousands of Bahraini went into the streets of the small island kingdom demanding political reforms and civil rights following similar protests in other Arab countries like Tunisia and Egypt.
Since then, demonstrations in Bahrain …

From PCC to Royal Charter: The Forming of a New Press Regulatory Body

April 10, 2013 – 11:54 pm |

Dr Benedetta Brevini, responsible for communication in the Media Reform Coalition (MRC), a coalition consisting of 20 different organisations from the National Union of Journalists (NUJ) to the Hacked Off group headed by actor Hugh Grant, says the outcome of a Royal Charter  as the new press regulatory body wasn’t quite what …

Writer, Lecturer and Media Reform Campaigner: Dr Benedetta Brevini on Italy, her Career and her Books

March 15, 2013 – 2:34 pm |

Dr Benedetta Brevini is coauthor of a book on Wikileaks and its aftermath and is writing a new one on Public Service Broadcasting (PSB) online and media regulation. She worked as a journalist in Milan, London and New York and contributes to The Guardian‘s Comment is Free. She is also a lecturer in Media …

Viewpoint – Alternative: Education that Says what it Means, the Original Free Schools

March 5, 2013 – 5:20 pm |

Taught by volunteers and inclusive to all, squat schools provide an alternative to Cameron’s Big Society free schools, without cost to the taxpayer.
Talia Rose, 28, who has been an English Foreign Language (EFL) teacher for the last nine years, volunteered as a facilitator in free schools in squats. She passionately …

Planet Issue: Long after Pythagoras – The World of the Flat Earth Society

March 5, 2013 – 3:18 pm |

Flat Earth believers have been around since biblical times and even photos of Earth taken from space have not deterred them.
Michael N Wilmore, 27, was born in London and moved to Ireland in his teens. He is the vice president of the Flat Earth Society, which he joined in 2006. …

Viewpoint – Planet: Europe’s Dirtiest Capital?

March 5, 2013 – 3:13 pm |

London smog.

In 1952 an estimated 4,000 people died as a result of severe air pollution in London. Today the same number are estimated to die early each year because of poor air quality in the Capital.
Dr Benjamin Barratt, of the Environmental Research Group at King’s College London, measures air quality …

Alternative Issue: An Alternative to Life – Welcome Collection, Death a Self Portrait

March 5, 2013 – 3:03 pm |

A skeleton leans sideways on a park bench,  the essence of where life once was now  just bare bones remain. As you look up a spectacular chandelier made of 3000 plaster cast bones by British artist Jodie Carey hangs eerily from the high exhibition ceiling and strikes you as you …

Planet Issue: Food for Thought, Re-using what can Still be Eaten

March 5, 2013 – 2:53 pm |

The UK is one of the richest countries in the world, but there are still massive issues of food waste and poverty. According to FoodCycle an estimated four million people are affected by food poverty in the UK.
Inspired by an American campus kitchen project, Foodcycle is a charity tackles food waste, …

Alternative Issue: Old Walls come to Life with Injection of New Culture

March 5, 2013 – 2:46 pm |

Illegal street art has been plastered on the walls of London’s East End for many years. The formerly known working class district is slowly transforming into a street art Mecca.
You only have to take a turn into a side street along Old Street to find a piece from the movement. …

Alternative Issue: Recipes on walls – Gourmandizing, what are you Hungry for?

March 5, 2013 – 2:25 pm |

Two Americans have launched a project that uses public art to share recipes, which are painted across walls in South East London.
Gourmandizing London is an artwork and community project that aims to celebrate the diversity of people, through a series of recipes collected for residents living in the nearby communities.
Jason …

Alternative Issue: Palestinian Hip-Hop a Product of its Environment

March 5, 2013 – 1:42 pm |

Out of great hardship comes great art. From the heart of a Palestinian refugee camp in the West Bank, a defiant voice is crying for freedom and justice.
In the narrow alleyways of Dheisheh refugee camp in Bethlehem, a Palestinian Hip Hop band was born in 2007. Three young rappers who …

Country in Focus the Alternative Issue: What do you think about the recent legal changes towards marijuana laws in the US?

March 5, 2013 – 12:49 pm |

Mary Stevens, 21, from North Carolina studies at City University and  speaks about the recently passed changes to marijuana laws.
I personally think that it can be useful for medical reasons and is less dangerous than cigarette smoking; it can be fun as well. I believe that the US have taken …

Alternative Issue: Street Crime Beaten Back by Boxing Clubs

March 5, 2013 – 12:41 pm |

Dave Ryan doesn’t just deliver mail around one of London’s toughest neighbourhoods he has spent most of his life and spare time trying to improve it.
Having been a community volunteer and local postman for over 42 years he has put blood, sweat and tears into his local boxing club where he …

Viewpoint – Alternative: Occupy, where are they now?

March 5, 2013 – 12:00 pm |

It’s a year since Occupy London left the shadow of St Paul’s Cathedral, but many of the group are still campaigning for change.
George Barda was one of the most recognisable faces of Occupy London. With his long dark hair and wiry beard he often appeared as a spokesperson for the …

Planet Issue: Deaths on Britain’s Roads can put off Cyclists Despite Londons Mayor’s Encouragement

March 5, 2013 – 11:56 am |

Cycle hire scheme in London “Boris Bikes”.

Cycling is a great way to exercise and a form of travel environmentalists will always favour. To them, the more who choose to cycle rather than travel using vehicles that emit harmful greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, the better.

Last week Green party member Jenny …

Planet Issue: Peacepainting – Catrine Gangstø

March 5, 2013 – 11:41 am |

Catrine Gangstø leading a Peacepainting workshop.

Peacepainting is an organisation that exists to remind the adult world what it means to think like a child. Using the same format, same frames and same canvas’s children across the world are taking part in painting workshops to express themselves.

“Children think what they say …

Alternative Issue: Dark Parks – the Photos of Stjepan Sedlar

March 5, 2013 – 11:37 am |

Seeing the world through Stjepan Sedlar’s eyes requires a lot of patience and having no fear of the dark. His parents are from Croatia and this Hamburg born photographer, who lives in Berlin, would stray into parks at night taking colour photos without lighting.
It is late afternoon on a cold Sunday in …

Alternative Issue: Dive Tourism Threatens Marine Life

March 5, 2013 – 11:31 am |

In the last two decades, the dive tourism industry has exploded into a global giant and has become a welcome source of income in less economically developed countries.
According to The Professional Association of Diving Instructors statistics, its membership numbers have increased by almost 70 per cent since 1993. Experts believe …

Censorship Issue: Bulagaria’s not so Free Press

March 5, 2013 – 11:30 am |

Bulgarian newspapers.

Bulgaria has the lowest level of press freedom of any European country according to this year’s Reporters Without Borders Press Freedom Index.

This widely accepted measure of how free the world’s media are, described the small Balkan state as a country “whose promise of reform came to nothing and where the …

Alternative Issue: Burkina Faso’s Paralympians Pave Way for Equal Rights

March 5, 2013 – 11:18 am |

When Burkina Faso’s Paralympic team arrived in London with nowhere to stay, nowhere to train and not enough money to salvage the situation in a strange country, 24 year old Liam Conlon decided to take matters into his own hands.
The Cambridge graduate put some of the athletes up in his …

Alternative Issue: Islamic Finance Investments on the Rise, but are there any Jobs?

March 5, 2013 – 11:04 am |
Left: Harris Irfan - Director at European Islamic Investment Bank. Right: Mohammed Amin - Writer and Speaker on Islamic finance

Investments in Islamic finance are increasing at a rapid rate globally. According to Ernst and Young global Islamic banking assets held by commercial banks are set to reach almost two trillion this year, up from the US$1.3 trillion of assets held in 2011. The sector has seen a 150% increase …

Alternative Issue: Tourism Threatens Balinese Culture

March 5, 2013 – 10:44 am |

As immigration and tourism soars in Bali, locals are clamping down more than ever to preserve their unique Hindu culture and island beauty.
Made Dedik, Balinese local and owner of Double D Surf School at Seminyak Beach is no exception, and vehemently believes in protecting the island he grew up on.  …

Viewpoint – Planet: Will British Aviation get a Second Wind?

March 5, 2013 – 9:07 am |

In 2010 plans for a third runway at Heathrow airport was dropped by the new coalition government. Now, in response to other European countries’ growing aviation capacity, the issue has resurfaced.
The Howard Davies aviation commission will spend 2013 determining the future need for expansions and deliver their report to the …

Viewpoint – Alternative: Squatting Faces its Death Blow

March 5, 2013 – 9:07 am |

Co-authored with Christian Jensen.
A new campaign will try and make squatting completely illegal. In September 2012, squatting in a residential location, the act of living in a building without paying rent, was made illegal. But now the government is considering extending this to all squatting.
Mike Weatherly, Conservative MP, is one …

International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA) 2012: Russian Dissent Expressed through Art Picks up Pace

December 31, 2012 – 3:16 pm |

 
Voina, a Russian artivist collective specalising in provocative street art against state control, has released a documentary which recently screened at the International Documentary Festival in Amsterdam (IDFA).
The film, Tomorrow, chronicles the history of the group from their early beginnings as shoplifting squatters to their biggest and most controversial piece, …

Viewpoint – Health: Furious Crusade Against Bad Science

December 27, 2012 – 6:22 pm |

 
Ben Goldacre, medical doctor and Guardian journalist is the father of Bad Science a collection of books, hundreds of articles and videos with one goal: challenging myths, rumours and shady businesses in the medical world.
Goldacre’s work is rife with aggression and challenges against other “experts”, with his book Bad Science …

International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA) 2012: Propaganda North Korean Style

December 25, 2012 – 12:58 pm |

 
Propaganda is a documentary purported to have been made in North Korea with images of decadent western lifestyle, capitalist culture and a message of salvation. A couple claiming to be North Korean dissidents approached a translator in Seoul handing her a DVD on condition that she translate and disseminate it.
All the …

Country in Focus the Health Issue: Longevity and the Italian Lifestyle

December 23, 2012 – 6:59 pm |

 
Ruggero Galtarossa is from a small city in Northern Italy called Padova. He is 22 years old he has been living in London for two and a half years. He is in his third year studying journalism and sociology for a BA joint honours degree.
The Italians have an exceptionally high …

Health Issue: Blind Art Exhibition – Seeing is Believing?

December 17, 2012 – 8:16 pm |

 
Moorfields Eye Hospital shows the world’s only collection of art for the blind. The unique exhibition consists of more than 20 pieces that appeal to the tactile sense and makes a bold statement that sight is not essential for enjoying art.
The artists used different materials but also vivid colours to …

Country in Focus the Sex Issue: Palestine, the West and a Little Thing Called Sex

December 14, 2012 – 4:31 pm |

Bahaa Milhem, a 3rd year journalism student at City University, talks about the difference in culture when it comes to sex in Palestine and here in the UK.
First sex in general and particularly for young people; sex outside marriage?
It’s not illegal but it is looked heavily down upon, especially for …

“Oi miss! Nice butt!”: Why is street sexual harassment so widespread and what can we do to stop it?

December 7, 2012 – 11:36 pm |

 
“I was doing my shopping in the beauty aisle in Sainsbury’s,” Liz*, an undergrad student at City University recalls, “and a middle-aged man, maybe 50 or 60, comes up to me and asks me with this disgusting smirk on his face: ‘Do you know where the Vaseline is?’ It completely …

Has the Paralympics Effect Started to Wane?

December 7, 2012 – 6:15 pm |

The Paralympics brought with them a positive change in attitudes towards disabled people, yet there is still a long way to go.
The French company Atos, contracted by the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) to reasess the situation of 2.6 million people on incapacity benefits by 2014, was one of …

Sex Issue: The Male Nude – A Declining Subject in Art

November 23, 2012 – 12:16 pm |

 
In the 80s the artists group Guerrilla Girls scattered New York with posters claiming that only 5 per cent of artists in the Metropolitan Museum were women but 83% of all nudes were female.
The number of female artists has increased since then but most nudes in modern art are still …

Rust & Bone Film Review

November 18, 2012 – 10:21 pm |

Two years after his hard-hitting crime drama A Prophet, Jacques Audiard is back with a moving love story that unites against all odds a recent amputee and an underground street fighter.
It starts off like an American road-movie: Ali (Matthias Schoenaerts), a hefty Belgian bloke and his five-year-old son are standing …

Viewpoint – Sex: The Struggle for Sexual Sobriety

November 16, 2012 – 10:39 pm |

Most people have some idea of what an addiction is, but sex doesn’t seem to be one that first comes to mind.
When Steve McQueen’s Shame, a film about a sex addict living in New York, hit the cinema earlier this year, it provoked a lot of controversy. It seems that …

City University Muslim Extremist Threatens Moderate Senior Cleric in Mecca

November 14, 2012 – 5:48 pm |

 
A senior Muslim cleric from the UK was threatened with arrest by an extremist in Saudi Arabia last month.
Dr Usama Hasan, a physics lecturer at Middlesex University and Senior Researcher of the Quilliam Foundation, a Muslim counter-extremism group, was on a pilgrimage in Mecca, when a former president of the …

One Small Step for Amy Hanson, a Big Step for Nicaragua

September 14, 2012 – 8:55 pm |

Amy Hanson, director of the organisation Big Steps talks about her new documentary about the street children in Nicaragua.

Symphony of Bird Song – The Music of Ebe Oke

August 12, 2012 – 10:58 pm |

Before instruments there was nature, and Ebe Oke is an artist who lets certain elements of this world resound through his music.
It was this unique sound and his voice that caught the attention of Geoff Travis, the founder of Rough Trade Records, who offered the US musician a development deal. Travis introduced …

Viewpoint – Censorship: Against a Brick Wall, The Internet in China

June 25, 2012 – 1:00 pm |

 
 
A study by Harvard University released this month reveals that China’s Internet Censor’s new focus is on topics that might incite protest in the country.
Citing examples that two of the most censored topics concerned protests in China’s Inner Mongolia region and in Zengcheng. The study showed that in both cases …

Censorship Issue: Huckleberry Finn, Looking at the Censored Book in Context

June 10, 2012 – 12:58 pm |

 
The old tale of Huckleberry Finn will be released as a new film next year but the best-loved story has had a very unpopular past.
The film currently in production, Tom Sawyer & Huckleberry Finn, directed by Jo Kastner, combines the stories of the two books by the author Mark Twain. Huckleberry …

Viewpoint – Censorship: When Silence is the Price for Truth…Journalism in DRC

June 4, 2012 – 12:57 am |

 
Reporters Without Borders stated that a journalist from Radio Liberté and two journalists from Kisangani News were released from prison in the last few weeks.Their crimes were that they asked too many questions about the government… But at least they are still alive.
According to Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) between …

Isolation: A Lovecraftian-Horror Short Story

May 31, 2012 – 9:58 pm |

Nobody knows what they are. Or where they came from.
I’m feeling strangely calm. I guess people who have just arrived in the trenches feel the same. One day its all routine and the usual pint on Fridays and the next death surrounds you so closely. Your sense of time is …

‘Journos Abroad’ The Occupation Camp in the Belly of the Beast

May 31, 2012 – 6:00 pm |

Occupy Hong Kong has secured itself a most ironic location, inside the Asia headquarters of HSCB. While the bank has stated they are happy for them to be there and support everyone’s right to protest, the camp state it’s just a hypocritical way of avoiding bad publicity.
While protests in Hong …

‘Journos Abroad’ AFP, “China is opening up, but it’s still a tough situation”

May 16, 2012 – 10:42 pm |

According to Eric Wishart, Agence France-Presse Asia region chief, China is a still a difficult country to work in, but things are looking up.
So how is the current situation in China, do you have any presence there?
We have bureaus in Beijing and Shanghai, Hong Kong and Taiwan. But in China it’s …

Censorship Issue: Freedom of Expression Through Photography – Voices of the other half at the Rossi & Rossi Gallery

May 16, 2012 – 10:04 pm |

What does it mean to be a young woman in Iran? The Omid Foundation explores this question through enabling disadvantaged women in Iran to use photography as a means of therapy. “Voices of the other half” is the product of a workshop with eleven girls led by Shandi Ghadirian, an …

‘Journos Abroad’ Only the Japanese can Save the Dolphins

April 25, 2012 – 2:44 pm |

 
Ric O’Barry, known from the documentary “The Cove”, recognises the film has done a lot of good, yet publicity is only a first step in saving marine life.
O’Barry visited Hong Kong Baptist University for a screening of the film and to debate against Allan Zeman, chairman of Ocean Park, a Hong …

‘Journos Abroad’ The Hong Kong Public Takes to the Streets (Five-Part Video Coverage)

April 1, 2012 – 8:40 pm |

The demonstration takes off.
 

 
Has a communist come into power?
 

 
So what is going on?
 

 
Anonymous makes an appearance.
 

 
Optimism?
 

 

‘Journos Abroad’ Burma Elections and Ethnic Struggles

March 25, 2012 – 5:46 pm |

On Sunday the first of April 2012 Aung San Suu Kyi and her National League for Democracy will for the first time have a chance to challenge the current military-backed civilian government head-on. But even if she should win every seat it will only be a first small step in solving Burma’s problems …

Censorship Issue: Pop Art from Palestine – Laila Shawa The Other Side of Paradise Exhibition

March 22, 2012 – 10:23 am |

 
Headless, armless and feetless mannequins, painted in bold colours and adorned with gem stones and colourful paintings inspired by Pop Art – the first impression of Laila Shawa’s exhibition „The other Side of paradise“ is beautiful, indeed. But a closer look reveals chains and belts of munitions and dynamite on …

Country in Focus the Censorship Issue: Syria One Year on…. Has Any Solution Really Come of it?

March 17, 2012 – 8:17 pm |

March 15 marked the one year anniversary of the Syrian uprising against President Bashar al Assad’s regime, which has shown no signs of slowing its offensive in the cities that have been key hubs of the opposition.
The pro-Assad forces overran most of the northern city of Idlib, while the military …

Viewpoint – Censorship: The Long Walk to Freedom into a Cul-de-sac? The South African ‘secrecy bill’

March 12, 2012 – 5:43 pm |

 
An information bill that is being debated in the next few months in South Africa could put democracy to the most extreme test.
Nelson Mandela came out of prison in the 90s at the end of apartheid, which was a state led separation and oppression of non-whites, and assumed power in …

‘Journos Abroad’ Democracy in Hong Kong?

March 11, 2012 – 6:02 pm |

“People’s aspirations has galvanised a yearning for democracy” says CK Lau, lecturer at Hong Kong Baptist University and Vice-Chairman of the Journalism Education Foundation.
Yet the upcoming Hong Kong Chief Executive election seems to be anything but. Three candidates, but the media has already written off the only non-Beijing supporter Albert Ho.
C. Y. …

Hollande in London – The French Socialist’s Visit

March 8, 2012 – 7:37 am |

It was a busy leap year for Mr François Hollande, the frontrunner in the French presidential elections. For someone who incarnates the 35-hour working week in France he was exceptionally busy. For breakfast he appeared on French radio station RTL being interviewed by well-known journalists such as Jean-Michel Apathie, Alain …

‘Journos Abroad’ Nick Clegg Gives Talk at Sciences Po

March 7, 2012 – 6:38 pm |

Britain’s Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg popped by the renowned Institute of Political Studies (“Sciences Po” for the French-speaking) in Paris last week for a light-hearted “conversation with students about current events”.
Among the few highlights of the conference was Mr. Clegg’s unexpected response to a British student who, as he …

A Swedish Class Safari

February 10, 2012 – 5:47 pm |
Photo: Wikimedia Commons

 
 
 
In January 2012, a small organisation called Allt åt Alla (Everything for Everyone), organised an event to highlight the issues surrounding inequalities in Sweden. It did this by organising what they called an “upperclass safari” and for 50kr (£4.70) members could go on a bus-ride to a wealthy suburb called …

Independence Issue: Could Anarchism Work in the Age of Austerity? Anarchist Book Fair 2011 Review

December 30, 2011 – 5:49 pm |

 
The sound of a brass band greeted me as I walked into Queen Mary University’s Library Square for the Anarchist Book Fair. This is the  fifth year running that this event has been held at the campus in Bethnal Green.
The book fair was started in 1983 by a group of …

Europe Issue: Ignited Indignation – Stéphane Hessel’s Time for Outrage! Book Review

December 27, 2011 – 5:02 pm |

 
 
Dynamite comes in small packages and Stéphane Hessel’s book Time for Outrage! is a testament to this, delivering an exceptionally powerful political punch in just 37 pages.
The metaphor of explosions are extremely fitting here as the author survived world war two as a resistance fighter in France amongst other things blowing …

The Largest Frontline Club Event: Julian Assange and Slavoj Žižek Talk Hosted by Amy Goodman

December 27, 2011 – 4:54 pm |

Wikileaks has lost its capital and possibly its founder, yet a few months ago at the Frontline club Assange seemed untouchable. The  talk was between Julian Assange and Slovenian philosopher Slavoj Žižek and was hosted by Amy Goodman of  Democracy Now! on 2 July 2011  at the Troxy, a beautiful …

Europe Issue: A Britain with a Deep Passion for the Continent, Jonathan Scheele Profile

December 21, 2011 – 3:26 pm |

Thirty two Smith Square, in the heart of London was the home of the Conservative party until 2004. Now it houses one of the Thatcher era’s biggest enemies, the European Commission. Representing Europe is no easy task says 63-year-old Jonathan Scheele especially in the middle of the current economic crisis.
The …

Country in Focus the Europe Issue: Germany ‘a lot of untapped potential’

November 29, 2011 – 10:35 pm |

Julien Rath, a second year journalism student with a personal passion for everything Europe, has given Synchronicity an insight into the financial pinch Germany currently finds itself in.
Born in Duisburg, Germany, Julien moved to America when he was five and returned to his native country as a teenager. After spending …

Europe Issue: From Small Town to Big Sound – We Walk on Ice and their Unique East End Indie Sound

November 24, 2011 – 1:59 am |
photos by Ben Rowe - www.benrowephotography.com

When We Walk on Ice start playing their captivating tight sound, it is hard to believe that only two souls are creating it.
Their unique Indie sound reminds me of at least two bands that I love: Cocteau Twins and Mazzy Star.  We Walk on Ice have a similar ethereal feel to …

One Picture Tells… Occupy London, November 2011

November 20, 2011 – 4:19 pm |

 

Viewpoint – Europe: Overreaction to a right-wing Threat? A Q&A with Dan Hodges of Searchlight

November 20, 2011 – 2:51 pm |

Since the recession of 2008 there seems to be more than just financial issues at stake. The disillusionment with traditional politics has resulted in hung parliaments in Britain and in some countries in Europe.
The knock on effect of this lack of support has seen voters trying to find solutions. Some …

Death of Jimmy Mubenga Sparks Protest

May 31, 2011 – 6:33 pm |

Campaigners that gathered outside the annual meeting of security company G4S last Thursday, called upon the organisation to be held accountable for the death of an Angolan refugee in their custody last year.
46-year-old Jimmy Mubenga died in hospital shortly after he was restrained by three G4S guards on board of a British …

European Schools to Face €7 Million Cuts

May 27, 2011 – 5:55 pm |

Plans to cut EU funding to a network of 14 ‘European Schools’ have been condemned by a parents’ association leader.
Synchronicity Magazine has learned that the schools, which encourage children of different European nationalities to study together, are facing budget cuts of €7m (£6.17m) out of their total €164m EU budget …

Viewpoint – Europe: Christiania, Last Bastion of Free Thought

May 20, 2011 – 3:41 pm |

Forty years after a group of hippie squatters stormed and took over an ex-army base in Copenhagen for a permanent home, they now face the biggest challenge in their extraordinary history. The city’s new right wing government has asked the 1,000 members of the Christiania commune – the largest and …

Protests in Madrid Cause Controversy

May 20, 2011 – 3:28 pm |

“Spain’s economic problems are down to depending on European subsidies for too long,” says a leading Spanish journalist.
Synchronicity Magazine spoke to London-based correspondent for Catalyuna Radio, Oriol Serra, about the crisis: “Money is gone now and Spain has turned from beneficiary into payer.” He added that a lack of planning …

Europe Issue: A Reality of a Big Society – Red Gallery London Exhibition

May 20, 2011 – 3:06 pm |

 
An exhibition about life in a Communist-era  town in the former East Germany is highlighting what its organisers claim is the real nature of the Prime Minister’s much vaunted ‘Big Society.’
The exhibition at the Red Gallery in Shoreditch displays the changing nature of the murals that once adorned the walls …

Viewpoint – Europe: Debate Over the True Nature of the ‘True Finns’

May 20, 2011 – 2:36 pm |

Finland’s growing nationalist party, the True Finns, have been put in the spotlight by their bid to block the European Union’s €78bn bailout of Portugal. While they were unsuccessful in stopping their country from backing the rescue package, they did succeed in grabbing the headlines all around Europe, many of …

Viewpoint – Europe: A Year From the French Presidential Elections… Who’s in the Race? Interview with John Lichfield from The Independent

May 20, 2011 – 1:44 pm |

Nicolas Sarkozy, the least popular president of recent history, will struggle hard to win a second term at the Elysee Palace. Meanwhile, the opposition party – the ‘Parti Socialiste’ (PS) – is yet undergoing another leadership crisis, with the arrest of one of their leading figures, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, who had …

Independence Issue: Outside the (Right) Law – Film Review

February 6, 2011 – 3:07 pm |

 
A thousand people gathered on the red carpet to protest against the projection of Outside The Law, Rachid Bouchareb’s second movie about the French (de)colonisation. Among the demonstrators, far-right and right-wing elected representatives tossed off many recriminations against the movie, calling it: a “revisionist work of propaganda” and an “insult to the …

Censored Burma

February 6, 2011 – 1:09 pm |

As Western nations learn more about Burma, modern technology is making it easier for the Burmese people to learn about their nation.The future of Burma is uncertain. The country has been under the intense watch of the international media of late, with their controversial elections and the release of the …

Viewpoint – Independence: ‘I was a protest virgin’, Jack said – 2011 London Student Fees Protest

February 6, 2011 – 1:04 pm |

 
Jack wears a poppy on his jacket and Doc Martens on his feet. “It’s the first time I have worn them” he says, proudly showing-off his brand new boots on the way to the demo. Until September 2010, Jack was living in Loughborough and never had the opportunity to raise …

Independence Issue: A Set of New Politics for Music – Band Review

February 6, 2011 – 1:02 pm |

Crowded together in the dark top floor of The Barfly in Camden, the audience had not been especially turned on by the warm up band, but when lead singer David Boyd entered with a half somersault as the smoke machines exploded, the crowd went wild as well.
Never steaming down and …

Viewpoint – Independence: Voices Raised to No Effect – 2011 London Student Fees Protest

February 6, 2011 – 1:00 pm |

I met Mikaela, 20, an International Relations student, on my way back from marching the streets of London towards parliament in protest of the tripled caps on student fees Nick Clegg had promised not to touch, but back tracked on with nothing more than a vague apology. She was sitting, chatting …

Viewpoint – Independence: Distortion of a Struggle – 2011 London Student Fees Protest

February 6, 2011 – 12:59 pm |

Streets full of noise and faces full of smiles – that was the picture that was apparent in London at the student protests on the 10th November. Even the sun was out to illuminate the way.
The feel was like every other march that makes this revolutionary city such a special …

Viewpoint – Independence: Don’t Let the Budget Cuts Bite – 2011 London Student Fees Protest

February 6, 2011 – 12:58 pm |

18-year-old, Tamara London was one of nearly 50,000 people who attended the boisterous march past the Houses of Parliament.
A gap year student from Barnet in north London she  expressed her concern at the government’s planned raise of tuition fees: “They should be encouraging people to go into education, instead they are putting …

Country in Focus the Independence Issue: To Live and Dwell with Nostalgic Notions of South Africa

February 6, 2011 – 12:55 pm |

“The Call” was the national anthem and the voice of the orange, white and blue the colours of the oppressive regime that was South Africa. The masses beaten into submission by the nightstick known as apartheid.
I was very young in the 1980s when I saw the photographs in the papers showing …

Independence Issue: Traces, a Story of New Life, Both On and Off the Stage

February 2, 2011 – 10:00 am |

“Traces is an investigation of the spaces that lie in the interstices of the modern world. In three poetic pictures the dancers are reclaiming a space to exist, struggling to leave traces in the nothingness that surrounds them.”
Traces, an expressionistic approach to the human experience, from birth to death, took …