London has a long history of struggle for democratic rights. It has been the birthplace of many campaigns for social justice, and sustained a political culture in which refugees and immigrants have made vital contributions to the intellectual and cultural life of the city and the nation. However the current disconnect between the everyday experience of many Londoners and the increasingly complex and disorganised systems of governance to which they are subjected, the widespread withdrawal from civic engagement into privatised spheres of personal fulfilment, the weakening of urban bonds which enabled diverse communities to flourish, and the vastly accelerated flows of people, goods and information – all these factors have put in question what exactly it means to be a ‘Londoner’ today.
Livingmaps Network is developing a Citizens Atlas of London, working with community groups in ‘opportunity areas’ identified in the 2050 London infrastructure plan, to create their own alternative map , with the aim of re-imagining London as ‘Our Kind of Town’. As part of this initiative we are organising a series of public lectures by leading figures in the movement to rethink what London means to its citizens, drawing on its historical record, its contemporary geography and most importantly, on its future envisagement .
Speakers to the series thus far : Iain Sinclair, Michael Edwards, Anna Minton, Ben Campkin, Emma Spruce and Bob Gilbert. Forthcoming speaker in 2019 include Ken Worpole and Roger Burrows. Further information about the Citizens Atlas : https://youtu.be/KaDJF4CSXKo
Further event information: www.livingmaps.org.uk