Wednesday, 19 December 2007


I enjoyed reading Rebecca Solnit's book 'Hope in the Dark' a year or so ago, and so was interested recently to come across a more recent piece of writing..The Secret Library of Hope - 12 Books to Stiffen Your Resolve. In this she says:

'There are a handful of books that I think of as "the secret library of hope." None of them deny the awful things going on, but they approach them as if the future is still open to intervention rather than an inevitability. In describing how the world actually gets changed, they give us the tools to change it again.'

The list covers books from William Morris's 'News from Nowhere' to the more recent 'The Unconquerable World: Power, Nonviolence, and the Will of the People;' by Jonathan Schell

Her article concludes that 'In ceasing the scramble for things, there would be real gains; we’d gain back time for sitting around talking at leisure about politics and the neighbors, for wandering around on foot — and for reading. But you don’t have to wait for everything to change: change it yourself by seizing these pleasures now.'

Resources ...

I've just been putting a new issue of our newsletter together - here are some bits from a resources section on the back page - a sort of festive lucky dip (and things I wanted to include on this blog anyway):

Study War No More
This is a report published jointly by Campaign Against Arms Trade and Fellowship of Reconciliation, providing information about the funding of UK universities by military organisations. It hopes to support students concerned about their own institutions and to encourage debate. The report can be downloaded, with more information and data and ideas for further research and campaigning, from 01865 748 796

Informed Choice
David Gee, with funding from the Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust, has produced a report and web resources on the information provided to potential military recruits and whether it really enables them to make an informed choice about enlistment to the armed forces. The main web site -- -- also links to:, aiming to give independent information about the reality of a career in the armed forces. (the main material on these is due out in January)

Not In Our Name
We’ve not heard this CD yet, but are impressed by the line-up of folk artists on this compilation CD, with its focus on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The material has been donated, with proceeds going to Stop the War Coalition. Available for £10 +£1 p&p from Stop the War coalition at: Telephone 020 7278 6694
Post orders to 27 Britannia Street, London WC1X 9JP

Faslane 365 Poster
Celebrating the completion of the Faslane 365 blockades, a poster has been produced, being a collage of photos of some of the many banners, people etc. who appeared there during the year.You can see it at Posters can be ordered by calling 0845 4588365 or emailing info@ (£2 each plus postage and packing).

A Climate of Conflict
This important report, from International Alert, looks at the social and human consequences that are likely to ensue from climate change – particularly the risks of conflict and instability – and makes recommendations for how we should be preparing to respond. Available to download from: and for phone enquiries contact: 020 7627 6800