Books, pamphlets and articles
Long before ‘Black Friday’ became the name for the first day of the Christmas shopping season, it was the name that the labour movement gave to the day on which trade union leaders inflicted a defeat on their own movement. It happened exactly one hundred years ago, on 15 April 1921.
Janine’s poetry is a raw and powerful expression of the solidarity between working- class people (in all our diversity) throughout history but also particularly the community resistance and togetherness that we have felt during the pandemic.
Nadia Whittome MP
Janine has, through these poems, accurately described life through the pandemic for millions, the frustrations and feelings of being undervalued throughout the mismanagement of it whilst low-paid, undervalued key workers have kept the country going. Absolutely brilliant from start to finish!
Sarah Woolley, General Secretary, Bakers Food and Allied Workers Union
Unprecedented Rhymes is a clever, big-mouthed, bitesize commentary on the first year of Covid-19. Its rollercoaster mirrors these broken times perfectly, right up to wondering if your legs are gonna work when you get off.
Gail ‘Something Else’, festival organiser
Prolific, radical and always topical, Janine Booth is one of the great performance poets of our age.
Attila the Stockbroker, poet, musician, troubadour
Janine Booth brings her trademark indomitable spirit to a collection of dangerously direct and honest poems, bottling a cocktail of emotions and human stories gathered across the first year of life under COVID-19 lockdown in the UK. Janine lays out the reality of corruption, neglect, and mismanagement, and rants her way to a definitive, defiant, and hopeful chronicle of life-under-lockdown.
The Repeat Beat Poet
No poet strikes a [power] chord with the feminist punk sorority more than Janine Booth.
Cassie Fox, Loud Women
Janine Booth is that rare creature, a political poet’s poet. In her work, fire and commitment stand clearly and fearlessly alongside creative clarity and razor-sharp warfare. She takes no hostages. These poems bluntly debunk the bullshit which we’re endless fed. Hers is no hackneyed voice. It comes to us fresh, fierce and fulsome. Embrace it.
Nick Toczek, poet and writer
Our story is set just after the first world war in Poplar, an east London borough with a population of 160,000 people crammed into the docklands in the bend of the River Thames (Poplar) and the area just north of it (Bow).
Britain’s anti-trade-union legislation makes it harder for unions to fight for the rights of disabled workers and disabled people more generally. How?
Limiting issues on which unions may lawfully take action
Legendary anti-slavery campaigner Frederick Douglass (pictured) once wrote that ‘Power concedes nothing without a demand’. He was spot on.
One hundred years ago, an arts movement was forming in a mainly-black district of New York City. Later known as the Harlem Renaissance, it was primarily cultural but also inescapably political. Literature, poetry, jazz, theatre, sculpture and more articulated the lives and demands of African-Americans no longer willing to be grateful that they were no longer enslaved.
O black and unknown bards of long ago.
How came your lips to touch the sacred fire?
How, in your darkness, did you come to know
The power and beauty of the minstrel’s lyre?
Who first from midst his bonds lifted his eyes?
Who first from out the still watch, lone and long.
Feeling the ancient faith of prophets rise
Within his dark-kept soul, burst into song?
James Weldon Johnson
This story of colour bars in the UK railway and bus industries begins after the Second World War, when Britain had a labour shortage and people moved to Britain in increasing numbers from Caribbean countries and elsewhere.
NUR Opposes Racism