I spent a very happy half-hour at the weekend at Janette Ray's second-hand bookshop in York - mainly architectural, buildings and planning - and came away with copies of two of the best regarded anarchist journals.
Now was edited by George Woodcock, and was taken under the wing of the Freedom Press in 1943. George Orwell was among the contributors during its short run. Also in the first issue: four drawings by John Olday - here's more about him - whose volumes of anti-war drawings, among them March to Death, were also published by the Freedom Press.
A generation later, Colin Ward started the most revered of libertarian journals, Anarchy - this issue, no. 5, is from July 1961, a quarter-of-a-century exactly after the start of the Spanish Civil War. It has a short poem by Herbert Read on the front cover.
I went today, for the first time in a few years, to the Anarchist Book Fair.- and discovered it as vibrant and crowded as ever. It has a new, and at first glance unlikely, home - in the splendid, mega-expensive redevelopment of the King's Cross Goods Yard. And here on the ground floor of Central St Martin's - which fronts on to the majestic Granary Square - there was room for all a hundred or so stalls, selling books, pamphlets, T-shirts, badges, poetry, art, old clothes ... And as you can see, the place was packed, with the red-and-black bunting adding a touch of distinction to the surroundings.
My favourites among the array of stalls were then handful selling old stuff for which, as any regular readers (are there any?) of this blog will know, I am a complete sucker. Nice to get this copy of Colin Ward's Anarchy - cover by Rufus Segar - from August 1968, looking at the student unrest of that politically scorching summer.
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