Protest works

Jeff Mangum for Occupy Wall Street

“2011 has been called the “year of protest”, as mass movements in the Arab world challenge oppressive governments, students occupy campuses and massed groups of youths burn English cities.” (Johnny Rodger) 

On Friday I was invited by Ranjana Thapalyal to teach on the Master of Research in Creative Practices, run by Research and Postgraduate Studies at the Graduate School in The Glasgow School of Art on protest in songs, poetry and art (in the latter I very much deferred to my audience, and learned more than I could teach!) It was great fun, and best of all was adding to my very North-Western perspective with some recent examples from China, Hungary, Mexico and Brazil that the students showed us. I’ve put my notes from the session, with links, online at:, for anyone else who’s interested. Hope to add links as I learn about them, so please send them in if you’ve got them! If you’re interested, the excellent Johnny Rodger of the GSA, and those other activists at The Drouth are organising a talk on Art Movements in the City, looking at how artists can draw on Glasgow’s radical tradition to channel mass movements to positive effect.  Open talk: Thursday 13th October, Mackintosh Lecture Theatre, 7pm.


About Pedalling Poetry

Writer Ellen McAteer is founder of Tell It Slant poetry bookshop in Glasgow, General Manager at Poetry London magazine. She was a visiting lecturer at the Glasgow School of Art, and a mentee of the Clydebuilt Verse Apprenticeship Scheme, under Alexander Hutchison, and a singer with the band Stone Tape, as well as a solo singer who won a BBC Radio competition with her song Blue Valentine. She was Director of the Poetry Trust, which ran the Aldeburgh Poetry Festival, a director of the Scottish Writers’ Centre, a visiting lecturer at Oxford University's MSt in creative writing, and a member of the core group of performers at the Hammer and Tongue spoken word collective in Oxford. She is a qualified Librarian.
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