Half a century ago, vast numbers of British working-class youths adopted a style that reflected both their attitude and tastes. Dubbed by the country’s media as ‘skinhead’, the look starkly contrasted with that of the country’s largely middle-class ‘hippy’ population, drawing heavily on the smart, practical & stylish fashions introduced to the UK by the Windrush generation. The Caribbean influence was even more evident in the music that provided the soundtrack to the skinhead scene: reggae. To finally set the record straight about this greatly mis-understood sub-culture, celebrated writers, Paul ‘Smiler’ Anderson & Mark Baxter have penned a brand new book, Scorcha! Skins, Suedes & style from the Streets – 1967 to 1973.

In addition, the pair have also compiled a companion 7” vinyl box set of the same title, comprising ten 45s,…

Born OTD in 1942, American boxer and activist, Cassius Marcellus Clay, AKA Muhammed Ali. When Muhammad Ali died, many mourned the life of the greatest sportsman the world had ever seen. In Redemption Song, Mike Marqusee argues that Ali was not just a boxer but a remarkable political figure in a decade of tumultuous change. Playful, popular, always confrontational, Ali refashioned the role of a political activist and was central, alongside figures such as Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, to the black liberation and the anti-war movements.

Marqusee shows that sport and politics were always intertwined, and this is the reason why Ali remained an international beacon…

Long recognized as a poet of radiant fury, of lament, and of refusal, Sean Bonney was a modern-day Blake whose poetry reminds us what matters. Our Death, his latest and long awaited first US collection, is full of poems of militant despair that refuse any capitulation to the worldview of the enemy. These poems wander the hinterlands of our absolutely endangered cities, chart the aftermath of the collapse of the social movements of the early part of the decade, and pay homage to the Greek anarchist poet Katerina Gogou.

Available in store and online.

Born OTD in 1933, American writer, filmmaker, philosopher, teacher, and political activist, Susan Sontag. Sontag was active in writing & speaking about, or travelling to, areas of conflict, including during the Vietnam War & the Siege of Sarajevo. She wrote extensively about photography, culture & media, AIDS & illness, human rights, communism & leftist ideology. Sontag wrote Illness as Metaphor in 1978, while suffering from breast cancer herself. In her study she reveals that the metaphors and myths surrounding certain illnesses, especially cancer, add greatly to the suffering of the patients and often inhibit them from seeking proper treatment.

By demystifying the fantasies surrounding cancer, Sontag shows cancer for what it is – a disease; not a curse, not…

Soon come. Showcasing the very best of Duke Reid’s Treasure Isle late rock steady and early reggae productions, Moonlight Groover is today regarded as an essential requirement for all serious fans of late Sixties Jamaican sounds. A best seller for Trojan in 1970, the collection features numerous major Jamaican hits from such celebrated performers as John Holt, Joya Landis, Alton Ellis and Tommy McCook, and is also notable for the sleeve artwork featuring Trojan’s own Tilly Vidal on the front cover.

Available as a limited edition of 750 individually numbered copies on orange coloured vinyl. Pre-order here.

Soon come. Its time to pass the hatchet instead of the talc, and trade in the spin-and-slide for the hook-and-sling and work that dancefloor! Club Soul are proud to present a fresh compilation of 14 hard-edged, kitchen-sink rhythms that demand dance floor attention! Here we showcase the funky side of Northern Soul which has captured the imagination of our soul brothers and sisters across Europe and a growing number of progressive clubs in the U.K.

This new 180gm heavyweight audiophile vinyl Soul Street compilation is presented in a single sleeve with new artwork. Soul Street…

Next book reading is with one of the Stop the War coalition founders, Chris Nineham. Monday, 10th February at St Mary in the Castle. 6pm. £2 OTD. “The state – from the civil service to the security services to the police – is often viewed as part of our democratic system, together with parliament, but this ignores the crucial fact that it predates anything resembling democracy in this country. There were extensions of the franchise in 1832, 1867 and 1884, but universal suffrage was not a reality until 1928. A unitary and cohesive state developed much earlier than even the start of that slow process of expanding the suffrage.”

What happens if a radical government gets elected in Britain? How will the banks, the civil servants, the media and…

Born OTD in 1809, French politician & the founder of mutualist philosophy, Pierre-Joseph Proudhon. His best-known assertion is that ‘property is theft!’, contained in his first major work, What Is Property?, published in 1840. Proudhon favored workers’ associations or co-operatives as well as individual worker/peasant possession over private ownership or the nationalization of land and workplaces.

The first English translation of Guerin’s monumental anthology of anarchism, published here in one volume. It details a vast array…

Blending memoir with critique, an award-winning poet and essayist’s devastating exploration of sickness and health, cancer and the cancer industry, in the modern world. A week after her 41st birthday, Anne Boyer was diagnosed with highly aggressive triple-negative breast cancer. For a single mother living payslip to payslip, the condition was both a crisis and an initiation into new ideas about mortality and the gendered politics of illness. In The Undying – at once her harrowing memoir of survival, and a 21st-century Illness as Metaphor – Boyer draws on sources from ancient Roman dream diarists to cancer vloggers to explore the experience of illness.

She investigates the quackeries, casualties and ecological costs of cancer under capitalism, and dives into the long line of women…

Born OTD in 1921, American social theorist, author, orator, historian, & political philosopher, Murray Bookchin. A pioneer in the ecology movement, Bookchin formulated & developed the theory of social ecology & urban planning, within anarchist, libertarian socialist, & ecological thought. In the essays that make up this book, Murray Bookchin calls for a critical social standpoint that transcends both ‘biocentrism’ & ‘ecocentrism’. A call for new politics & ethics of complementarity, in which people, fighting for a free, nonhierarchical, & cooperative society, begin to play a creative role in natural evolution. Bookchin attacks the misanthropic notion that the environmental crisis is caused mainly by overpopulation or humanity’s genetic makeup.

He resolutely points to social causes–patriarchy, racism, and a capitalistic “grow or die” economy–as some of the problems the environmental…