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Went to see Jimmy Cauty's New Bedford Rising/Aftermath Dislocation Principle installation in a railway arch in Southwark. A dystopia of the ruins of Bedford, with a ziggurat tower being built next to its remains, as 'New Bedford', which he bills as a 'utopian rebuild'.



















Parts of it reminded me of Civilia: the End of Suburban Man (1971) by 'Ivor de Wofle' (Hubert de Cronin Hastings, of the Architectural Review), in which he describes the suburbia around Nuneaton, and then proposes a whole new city on drastically new lines, including vertical living in a university:


Nuneaton: dismal areas of unkempt grass between rashes of subtopian building straggling alongside overwide roads.

644 Manchester subscribers to the Chartist Land Plan, 1847

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A year or so ago I spent a long time transcribing the Manchester subscribers to the Chartist Co-Operative Land Company. The records are in a big volume now at the National Archives (ref to follow). I've given the database of 644 subscribers from Manchester to Mark Crail to put on his wonderful Chartist Ancestors website, to accompany previous transcriptions of other towns by Jamie Bronstein. They contain the names, occupations and full addresses of the subscribers from 1847.

Go to Mark's website to see the names here: http://www.chartists.net/chartist-land-plan/manchester-chartists-land-plan-supporters/

Read his blog here: http://chartist-ancestors.blogspot.co.uk/2015/11/was-your-ancestor-manchester-chartist.html

I'm going to map them when I have time and put them on http://protesthistory.org.uk when I have time.

Here's the 1841 census entry for one Land Plan subscriber that Mark picked out: Robert Bellis, tripe dresser and dealer of 30 Pollard Street, Ancoats, Manches…

My new book is here! And here is the accompanying website.

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Protest and the Politics of Space and Place, 1789-1848 is out with Manchester University Press on 1 December. I've just received my copy and it looks great!

http://www.manchesteruniversitypress.co.uk/cgi-bin/indexer?product=9780719097058

There was so much that went on the cutting room floor in the final edit, so I've put the choice leftovers on my website to accompany the book: http://protesthistory.org.uk

I have also put my data on there and lots of interactive maps and geo-referenced historic maps and sources to use. It's 'the book plus' and I hope is an interesting way of exploring the material.

http://protesthistory.org.uk

Please cite the website and my name if you are using them elsewhere.

More to come as I keep updating the database.

Full video of my talk at the British Library Labs symposium

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Here's my full talk at BL Labs.

 I'll blog on the wonderful day soon.

Slides of my talk at the BL Labs symposium

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Video of Chartist tour of London

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I'll report on the fantastic BL Labs symposium of 2 November soon.

In the meantime here's the video explaining my Political Meetings Mapper project and clips of the Chartist tour of London that we did in September. The video was filmed and edited by Adam Jones-Lloyd. There are subtitles if you need them.







British Library Labs symposium on Monday 2 November

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I'm going to be doing the big reveal of Political Meetings Mapper at the British Library Labs symposium on Monday 2 November.

I'll post the slides and link here after the event, so you'll get to find out how I got from this when I started my postgrad research all those years ago:


to this:

(the most exciting video on the internet....)




And the video of our Chartist tour of London pubs:


Utopias! Experiments in perfection conference, 12 November, Letchworth Garden City

The 2015 Conference of the University of Hertfordshire's Social Science, Arts and Humanities Research Institute (SSAHRI)

Spirella Ballroom
Bridge Road, Letchworth Garden City, Hertfordshire, SG6 4ET
10.30am-5pm, 12th November 2015

followed by a public lecture and reception


This year's SSAHRI conference, organised by colleagues at the University of Hertfordshire and the University of Lincoln, and very kindly supported by the Letchworth Garden City Heritage Foundation, is on the theme of utopias.

It is very appropriate that the conference will be taking place in Letchworth, the world's first Garden City – and one of the first practical experiments in Utopianism. The conference is exploring the concept of Utopia – we will be looking at utopias from all sorts of angles: social, economic, educational, environmental, literary, cultural, aesthetic and philosophical to name a few.


The conference Keynote speech will be delivered by distinguished architectural historian of the 20th…

Does the form of traditional academic journals mean anything to students in the age of online access?

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This question was sparked by a twitter conversation around George Gosling's excellent blog post introducing types of academic writing to undergraduates: https://gcgosling.wordpress.com/2015/10/12/reading1/ 

George explains that there are four types of academic writing, from textbooks, monographs, journal articles and edited collections of essays. This is true and correct, but his explanation of what a journal article (and indeed a journal) got me thinking and debating with Barry Doyle, Darryl Leeworthy and Mark Freeman about how students view journals in the age of online access.

I've found that first year undergraduates get really confused about what a journal is, and what the difference is between a journal and a journal article. This is not surprising, as their first weeks at university are 99% the first time they've ever encountered such a specialist type of writing and publication.

In order to explain what a journal is, therefore, I (and it seems the rest of us academ…

Chartist Walking Tour of London, with British Library Labs

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On Monday 21 September, as part of my British Library Labs project, we held a Chartist day and walking tour around West London.