Saturday, June 1st was opening day for season #3 at Diggers. It was so great to see friends, old and new, local and from away. Being able to show off the re-vamped shop was fun, almost as much as hanging out outside on the sunny day with folks!
I’ve expanded the shop to almost twice the size since the back part of the space got cleaned out, so not only do we have more books, but more space for reading, discussions, and tea!
So what’s else is new?
There’s a larger collection of fiction books in almost new condition that I’ve curated over the winter. It’s full of favourites, so if you’re looking for inexpensive ($3 – $10) novels to read this summer, and maybe some recommendations, come on by.
Local authors now have a section, including the entire Thaddeus Lewis series by Janet Kellough, and I’ve got titles from PEC’s Invisible Publishing including one of my favourite little novels, I am a Truck by Michelle Winters. This one was shortlisted for the Giller.
Some of the art I make, including my embroideries with a message – sometimes with a message, sometimes they’re just cute – are for sale now and some linocut handprinted cards to send to friends.
Lastly, I’ve also just returned from the Montreal Book Fair with a box of new rad books that you likely won’t find anywhere else in the region, too. Check some of them out below, and I hope to see you in the shop sometime soon.
Shout Your Abortion – a collection of photos, essays, and creative work inspired by the movement of the same name, a template for building new communities of healing, and a call to action. Since SYA’s inception, people all over the country begun sharing stories and organizing in a range of ways: making art, hosting comedy shows, creating abortion-positive clothing, altering billboards, and starting conversations that had never happened before. This book documents some of these projects and individuals who have breathed life into this movement, illustrating the profound liberatory and political power of defying shame and claiming sole authorship of our experiences. With Roe vs. Wade on the brink of reversal, the act of shouting ones’ abortion has become explicitly radical, and Shout Your Abortion is needed more urgently than ever before.
Written for artists, activists and scholars, Art After Money, Money After Art: Creative Strategies against Financialization by Max Haiven makes an urgent call to unleash the power of the radical imagination by any media necessary. We imagine that art and money are old enemies, but this myth actually reproduces a violent system of global capitalism and prevents us from imagining and building alternatives.
In these newly collected essays, interviews, and speeches, world-renowned activist and scholar Angela Y. Davis illuminates the connections between struggles against state violence and oppression throughout history and around the world.
Reflecting on the importance of black feminism, intersectionality, and prison abolitionism for today’s struggles, Davis discusses the legacies of previous liberation struggles, from the Black Freedom Movement to the South African anti-Apartheid movement. She highlights connections and analyzes today’s struggles against state terror, from Ferguson to Palestine.
Facing a world of outrageous injustice, Davis challenges us to imagine and build the movement for human liberation. And in doing so, she reminds us that Freedom is a constant struggle.
Paper Politics: Socially Engaged Printmaking Today is a major collection of contemporary politically and socially engaged printmaking. This full-color book showcases print art that uses themes of social justice and global equity to engage community members in political conversation. Based on an art exhibition that has traveled to a dozen cities in North America, Paper Politics features artwork by over 200 international artists; an eclectic collection of work by both activist and non-activist printmakers who have felt the need to respond to the monumental trends and events of our times.
Hey Music Makers! Can someone help me organize a sing-along? Seriously, if you’re into that, I’d like to have one at Diggers. Meanwhile, this book contains 77 songs—with words and sheet music—of solidarity, revolt, humor, and revolution. Compiled from several generations in America, and from around the world, they were originally written in English, Danish, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Russian, and Yiddish.
Silvia Federici work is a must read! In this edited collection of work spanning more than 20 years, she provides a detailed history and critique of the politics of the commons from a feminist perspective. In her clear and combative voice, Federici provides readers with an analysis of some of the key issues in contemporary thinking on this subject. Drawing on rich historical research, she maps the connections between the previous forms of enclosure that occurred with the birth of capitalism and the destruction of the commons and the “new enclosures” at the heart of the present phase of global capitalist accumulation. Considering the commons from a feminist perspective, this collection argues that women and reproductive work are crucial to both our economic survival and the construction of a world free from the capitalist hierarchies. Federici is clear that the commons should not be understood as happy islands in a sea of exploitative relations–but rather autonomous spaces from which to challenge the existing organization of life and labor.
Reading Capital Today is a good read, whether you read the original Capital or not. Recent years have seen a surge of interest in Marxian political economy and especially Marx’s great work Capital. 150 years after the book’s original publication, are there readings of Capital that can help us find new pathways to progressive or revolutionary change?
In this wide-ranging new volume, leading thinkers reflect on Capital‘s legacy, its limitations and its continuing relevance for today, highlighting issues including ecology, gender, race, labour, communism, the ‘Third World’ and imperialism..
Hidden behind conventional explanations about the fight over women’s reproductive freedom is a dramatic fight over women’s reproductive labor. On one side, elite policymakers want an expanding workforce reared with a minimum of employer spending and a maximum of unpaid women’s work. On the other side, women are refusing to produce children at levels desired by economic planners. With little access to childcare, family leave, health care, and with insufficient male participation, women in the US (though the same might be said in Canada) are conducting a spontaneous birth strike.
In other countries, panic over low birth rates has led governments to underwrite childbearing with generous universal programs, but here women have not yet realized the potential of our bargaining position. When we do, it will lead to new strategies for winning full access to abortion and birth control, and for improving the difficult working conditions parents now face when raising children.
The first comprehensive account of how the rise of postwar youth culture was depicted in mass-market pulp fiction. As the young created new styles in music, fashion, and culture, pulp fiction shadowed their every move, hyping and exploiting their behavior, dress, and language for mass consumption and cheap thrills. With their lurid covers and wild, action-packed plots, these books reveal as much about society’s deepest desires and fears as they do about the subcultures themselves. Featuring approximately 400 full-color covers, many of them never before reprinted, along with 70 in-depth author interviews, illustrated biographies, and previously unpublished articles, the book goes behind the scenes to look at the authors and publishers, how they worked, where they drew their inspiration and–often overlooked–the actual words they wrote. It is a must read for anyone interested in pulp fiction, lost literary history, retro and subcultural style, and the history of postwar youth culture.