Watch…Barbara …it is 1980, in East Germany, and she is a doctor who has applied to leave the country to be with her West German lover. As a punishment she is sent to a rural town to work in a hospital dealing with young patients. Secretly she plans her escape as the local Stasi watch her every move and seek to intimidate her. The director effectively recreates the claustraphobic nature of East Germany and its repressive society. Barbara’s West German lover wants her to join him but to become a housewife which sums up the dilemma for people from the East who really wanted to stay in their own part of Germany but live a freer life. The personal is political…..
Listen….to Sarah Gillespie and her new album In the Current Climate. Sarah performed during the Manchester Peace History week in Manchester. Her songs are funny and heartfelt. On the night I saw her she echoed the anger that many of us feel about the injustice of the world. One of her songs was dedicated to Shaker Aamer, the last Londoner in Guatanamo detention camp. Sarah called on us to support him and his family in their call for freedom and justice. see Sarah’s article on Shaker at
Celebrate… Black History Month at the WCML with a talk on Wednesday 17 October at 2pm by Natalie Zacek, Frederick Douglass and Manchester: a ‘liberating sojourn’. Douglass is celebrated for his activities in the abolitionist movement in the United States, but his visit to Manchester in 1846 was a crucial moment in the evolution of his thought on slavery, race, economics, and politics. This talk describes the centrality of Manchester and the North West in this radical transatlantic movement.Natalie is Lecturer in History and American Studies at the University of Manchester.All welcome; admission free; light refreshments after.
Later at the WCML at 3pm listen to Andy Merrifield, author of Magical Marxism and intellectual biographies of John Berger and Guy Debord, who will speak about the Enigma of Revolt: Occupy and beyond. Joseph Maslen (Edge Hill), will speak about representations of ageing Communists in popular fiction. Further info see
Go for a walk……. Saturday 20 October 11.30amUp Then Brave Women: Manchester’s Radical Women. Meeting point: Robert Owen statue, Coop Bank, Corporation Street.This walk will include Chartism, women in the Coop movement , Socialist women, women writers on the Manchester Guardian, Mrs Gaskell, the Manchester Society of Women Artists and women at Peterloo. £6.00 /5.00. Advance booking recommended: firstname.lastname@example.org