Tuesday, 9 February
Protest: Stories of Resistance with Christopher Eccleston, Martyn Bedford and David Waddington
Housmans Bookshop and Comma Press are delighted to host two online events with renowned British actors Christopher Eccleston and Maxine Peake reading from protest-inspired stories published in Comma’s History-into-Fiction series, Protest.
The two events will take place on two consecutive dates, with Christopher reading on the 9th of February and Maxine on the 10th. Both readings will be followed by a conversation between authors and historians discussing the events depicted in the stories read by Christopher and Maxine.
Christopher will be reading ‘Withen’ by Martyn Bedford, a story about the Battle of Orgreave, during the 1984-85 miners’ strike. The reading will be followed by a discussion with author Martyn Bedford and academic David Waddington who has published widely on Britain’s mining communities.
If you purchase a “book plus entry ticket”, please email email@example.com stating which book you prefer (Protest or Resist) and let us know whether you would like the book posted or if you would like to collect it from the shop. Please supply a UK address if the book is to be posted out.
An invitation to this online event will be emailed to you on the day of the event. We will use the email address used to purchase the ticket. Please check your spam folder and if you have not received the invitation by 5pm, email us and we will resend it.
More info on Comma’s History-into-Fiction series, Protest and Resist:
At a time of great political disarray – government corruption and incompetence, the COVID pandemic, Brexit and new austerity measures looming – we look back to the past to remember the times the people have called it out, stood up, resisted!
For a nation that brought the world Chartism, the Suffragettes, the Tolpuddle Martyrs, and so many other grassroots social movements, Britain rarely celebrates its long, great tradition of people power. Both Protest and Resist are collections of fictions and essays that explore and commemorate key moments of British protest and defiance over the last two millenia.
Written in close consultation with historians, sociologists and eyewitnesses – who also contribute afterwords – these stories follow fictional characters caught up in real-life struggles, offering a street level perspective on the noble art of resistance. Authors re-imagine campaigns to change unjust laws, protests against unlawful acts, uprisings successful and unsuccessful – from Boudica to Blair Peach, from the Battle of Cable Street to the tragedy of Grenfell Tower, from the Peasants’ Revolt of 1381 to the anti-Iraq War demo of 2003.
In the age of fake news and post-truth politics this book fights fiction with (well researched, historically accurate) fiction. Britain might not be famous for its revolutionary spirit, but its people know when to draw the line, and say very clearly, ‘¡No pasarán!’
Martyn Bedford is the author of five novels for adults: Acts of Revision, which won the Yorkshire Post Best First Work Award, Exit, Orange & Red, The Houdini Girl, Black Cat, and The Island of Lost Souls. He is also the author of two novels for young adults: Flip (shortlisted for the Costa Children’s Book Award, and winner of the Sheffield Children’s Book Award, the Calderdale Book of the Year Award, the Bay Book Award and the Immanuel College Book Award) and Never Ending (2014). His first collection of short stories, Letters Home, is published by Comma Press.
David Waddington is Professor of Communications and Co-Director of the Cultural, Communication and Computing Research Institute at Sheffield Hallam University, where he started out as a Postdoctoral Research Associate in March 1983. Since being appointed, he has continued to publish widely on the policing of public order, industrial relations in the coalfields, and the sociology of Britain’s mining communities. His latest book, Pit-folk and Peers: The Remarkable History of the People of Fryston, Volume 1 – Echoes of Fryston Hall (1809-1908), has just been published by Route (Pontefract).