Archives for June 2013

Young East Ender’s Views of Regeneration: The North Woolwich Story

North Woolwich is part of the Royal Docks  but is physically isolated by virtue of its physical  geography and for many years was  subject to neglect by planners and politicians alike . It has a large  concentration of social housing and has been home to a large , and increasingly ethnically diverse  working class community. East Europeans are the latest immigrants to an area which . Until very recently the area was relatively untouched by  the gentrification of the Docklands.  A proposed Thames Gateway bridge, designed  to replace the ferry, linking the North Woolwich with the south bank was vigorously opposed by local people on the grounds that it would increase road traffic  while doing nothing to improve the area’s economic prospects. The original plan for the Bridge was scrapped  after numerous objections to a public enquiry in 2007, but now (2013) there is a move  to reinstate  it.  In [Read More…]

Race, Ethnicity and the Unconscious

This is an excerpt from a seminar I gave in Vienna in which I explore some of the problems and possibilities of applying  psychoanalytic concepts and insghts to understanding and tackling  the culture of popular racism.

May/June Blog – Living the Dream : a Letter from Paris

Forty five years after the May ‘evenements’ in Paris I took my grandchildren to Euro-Disney for their half term holiday break. To bracket  the most determined assault on the ‘Society of the Spectacle’ with the most extravagant expression of its triumph might seem wilfully perverse, at best a rueful acknowledgement that capitalism has succeeded, beyond our wildest nightmares, in appropriating and merchandising the spirit of carnival, rendering it into an entirely alien, kitsch idiom; at worst  an exercise in political masochism, rubbing  one’s nose in the fact that the revolutionary Left has  failed to produce a culture of popular pleasure  other than rioting. But in the event a more complicated set of  considerations imposed themselves. The Cabinet of Curiosities When we got to Paris, our first port of call was the Quai Branly, the  new home of the  ethnographic collection of the  Musee de’L’Homme,  which  also houses artefacts from the [Read More…]