Welcome to This Week in Trumplandia. Check in with us every Thursday for a weekly roundup of the most pertinent content on our country, which is currently spiraling down a crappy toilet drain. You owe it to yourself, your community, and your humanity to contribute whatever you can, even if it is just awareness of the truth....more
Posts Tagged: UK
Eno urged British citizens, who he referred to as “complacent on the issue, like me,” to consider the importance of the EU’s influence on the global stage, citing its significant work in promoting workers’ rights, gun control, environmental issues, and more:
What the ‘Leaves’ have on their side is their unquenchable enthusiasm for a ‘Great’ Britain that they think we can revive – and several powerful media outlets to propagandise the idea.
An ad campaign by Penguin Random House in the UK meant to intrigue readers into purchasing classic books has instead sparked controversy for being anti-Russian. The ad features an unattributed line from the novel Fathers and Sons by Ivan Turgenev: “Aristocracy, liberalism, progress, principles… Useless words!...more
World Intellectual Property Day, the greatest of all spring holidays, was this Tuesday, April 26th. In honor of the holiday, the UK’s Intellectual Property Minister Baroness Neville-Rolfe made a statement calling for an update in the legal concept, Billboard reports:
The process of digitization has transformed the world around us at a furious pace.
Emma Garman discusses the ability of UK’s elite to pay lawyers to keep their names out of the press. She raises the topics of censorship, public interest, and the availability of these resources to people of all classes:
The loftiest interpretation of public interest is our common concern with the workings of government, but we’re more often drawn to stories wherein someone’s carefully curated public image conflicts with their private behavior—especially if their image helps them make money.
For VICE, Amelia Dimoldenberg asks people in London why they visit their local libraries. Since 2010, UK has lost nearly 350 libraries because of cuts in local spending. But the answers Dimoldenberg receives show how necessary libraries still are:
“The library is a great part of the community, especially for young people who find it hard to study at home.
I’m interested in Roland Barthes’s idea that mythology is essentially a type of speech, and that speech defines a culture. Poetry can define the dominant languages we have in culture—and now those languages are advertising and the news media.
So says Robert Montgomery, a Scottish poet who creates public art with his poems by posting them over advertising billboards, in empty swimming pools, at airports, and on the backs of pickup trucks....more
Influenced by the heyday of ’70s and ’80s reggae in the UK, new artists are gathering a following in the region, the Guardian reports. Marcia Richards of the London band the Skints believes the renewed interest has something to do with the fact that the other bands in her scene have built followings organically, by playing show after show, rather than relying on networking through the Internet:
People appreciate us because we have built up a following by connecting directly with audiences live, and nowadays that seems rarer.
If you ever wanted to own one of the nation’s oldest bookstores, now’s your chance. Otto Bookstore in Williamsport, Pennsylvania has been operating since 1841, but the 81-year-old proprietor is in the market to sell.
The Oregonian names Portland’s 10 best bookstores, and world-famous Powell’s didn’t make the cut....more
The British Society of Authors has called on literary festival organizers to pay authors who make appearances at events. The organization is asking that any literary festivals that charge entrance fees pay authors a minimum fee. At present, few events pay, and those that offer an appearance fee typically pay as little as £150, or about $227, while celebrity speakers are often paid significantly more....more
Hong Kong is dominated by two kinds of bookstores—the independent shops specializing in political books and pornography banned by China and the shops secretly owned by Beijing’s communist government.
A Tokyo-based bookstore hosting a book fair centered around democracy and freedom suspended the event after criticism....more
The Canadian bookstore that discovered a hundred-year-old photo album has solved the mystery of the photos’ origin. They belonged to an Edmonton man born in 1919.
San Francisco is a city filled with bookstores, and SF Weekly takes a look at some of the best....more
Last month I reached out to LA-based expat Anna Span, an English porn producer (and one-time Liberal Democrat candidate) who awhile back, fought the UK’s ban on showing female ejaculation in porn—and won! I was anxious to hear her take on the recent crackdown on sadomasochistic practices in adult films, specifically whether “BDSM-themed art porn” is technically even legal in the UK nowadays....more
The Writing the Future report . . . found that the “best chance of publication” for a black, Asian or minority ethnic (BAME) writer was to write literary fiction conforming to a stereotypical view of their communities, addressing topics such as “racism, colonialism or post-colonialism as if these were the primary concerns of all BAME people.”
Recently in the UK, poetry seems to have found its way back into mainstream culture, which of course elicits the question: did it ever leave? Over at Newsweek, Howard Swains examines the reasons we return to poetry even in an age when words like “distraction” and “multimedia” tend to hijack any dicsussion of art or literature:
“In some ways it’s that question of whether poetry is dying that keeps poetry alive,” Chris McCabe, a poet and librarian at the Saison Poetry Library at Southbank Centre in London, says.
Cory Doctorow explains a law currently proposed in the UK that would automatically censor internet user’s browsers.
This automatic censoring is proposed by several Members of Parliament, the Daily Mail, and various British religious groups. The proposed web filtering aims to protect children from stumbling upon pornographic material, however, there are concerns that the filter may inadvertently make non-pornographic sites inaccessible:
“Sites will get blocked if they casually mention sex....more
With more unraveling of the Murdoch/phone-hacking scandal, the consequences and reverberations of the case have grown extensive and increasingly grave.
The latest development came to light this morning when Sean Hoare, a former employee of the News of the World, who initially outed Andy Coulson for his involvement and awareness of the phone-hacking activity at the newspaper, was found dead in his home in Watford....more
Fear not, the saddening disappearance of independent bookstores is being countered by literature lovers all over the globe.
The Book Barge, brainchild of Sarah Henshaw, is a canal boat turned bookstore that flows leisurely on the UK’s canal network. See how this “buoyant business” stays afloat and provides readers with a more pleasurable shopping and literary experience....more