Further Reading

This is an extract from Colin Ward’s book ‘Anarchy in Action’, first published in 1973. He talks about some of the differences between being housed, and housing oneself. Touching on the peripheral squatter settlements around some of the worlds largest city; the 1946 large-scale squatting of old army camps in the UK by families and the differences between the settlements that became ‘official’ and those that did not; and finally the gulf in Britain between the owner occupier and the municipal tenant. The pdf is layed out for print, so you have to skip backwards and forwards a bit, but it’s only short and well worth a read. Find it here: http://zinelibrary.info/we-house-you-are-housed-they-are-homeless

As part of an ongoing radical history project, and in response to the proposals of criminalisation, the fifth edition of ‘using space’ is devoted to a brief and incomplete history of squatting in Brighton: http://northern-indymedia.org/zines/2075

MESHO –  A 16-page tabloid spoof paper about squatting, homelessness and autonomous spaces. Read all about it here: www.schnews.org.uk/satire/pdf/mesho.pdf

The third edition of the zine ‘House Magic’ covers squatting across Europe. The subterranean theme of #3 was “art squats” – the relation of political big building occupations in the center of global cities to government cultural policy. This is a theme that is heating up as budgets are cut under the new regimes of neo-liberal austerity. (No, the bankers will not be blamed for the crisis, and the people will be punished.) At the same time, unemployment remains high, and not everyone – especially the young, who are suffering disproportionately – wants to stay home on the dole and watch TV. I am fascinated by the “new institutionality” that is underway in Spain, an apparent rapprochement between leading museums and social centers. The policy is outlined in theoretical terms in the journal of the Museo Reina Sofia, Carta #2 (in Spanish), and it is my hope for HM#4 to give a report on this. Also in Hamburg the origins of the Gängeviertel point in the same direction, towards a government policy of tolerant forebearance in the face of insurrectionary urban development: if you can’t beat ’em down, let ’em out for supervised play. Again, a policy of austerity combined with massive unemployment is a recipe for all sorts of popular mischief. Get it here: https://sites.google.com/site/housemagicbfc/house-magic-3-in-preparation-1