Archives for the month of: August, 2011

UK Libraries: Struggles for the Knowledge Commons

 Saturday 27 August 2011, 3pm

Free, no booking required

 Leading writers, scholars and artists in dialogue with the Bidoun editorial collective in a series of Saturday seminars.

We have dedicated the final Bidoun Library Seminar to a meeting on libraries.  Participants reflect on current struggles around the closures and drastic cuts affecting public libraries in theUK.  Join representatives from the Library Campaign, the Feminist Library, New Cross Library, the Goldsmiths Library Occupation and others to discuss and strategise. 

On Library cuts and closures in the UK (sourced from voicesforthelibrary.org.uk): 

-Over 500 public libraries, including 60 mobile libraries, are currently under threat of closure and the number could increase to 800

– The duty of a local council to provide a ”comprehensive and efficient library service” is a legal obligation under the 1964 Public Libraries and Museums Act.  

Some councils are suggesting that library services can be run by volunteers and many are under threat of being privatised. 

For more information on closures and campaigns, please see:

www.librarycampaign.com

www.voicesforthelibrary.org.uk

http://feministlibrary.co.uk/

http://goldsmithsinoccupation.wordpress.com/

http://www.publiclibrariesnews.com/

http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/1269

PLEASE NOTE:  There  will not be  a seminar on Saturday 3 September as previously advertised.

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Eamonn McCabe for the Guardian


Bidoun Library Saturday Seminars

Ahdaf Soueif

 
Saturday 20 August, 3pm at the Serpentine Gallery

Leading writers, scholars and artists in dialogue with the Bidoun editorial collective in a series of Saturday seminars.

Ahdaf Soueif comes from a family of activists and writers who have been some of the key protagonists in the recent revolution in Eygpt. She arrive in London having spent several months in Cairo reporting on the events as they unfolded. Soueif will be discussing her work and sharing her experiences of activism and writing over the past two decades, as well as connecting with colleagues in Cairo, in an exciting seminar on writings and the revolution.

Based between Cairo and London, Soueif writes in both English and Arabic, and her essays and reviews have been published in numerous publications, including: Akhbar al-Adab, al-Arabi, Cosmopolitan, Granta, al-Hilal, al-Katibah, The London Magazine, The London Review of Books, New Society, Nisf al-Dunya, The Observer, Sabah al-Kheir, The Sunday Telegraph, Times Literary Supplement, Washington Post and others. 

About The Bidoun Library:

Founded in 2009, The Bidoun Library is a peripatetic resource of books, periodicals and ephemera developed by Bidoun Projects, a not-for-profit publishing, curatorial and educational initiative dedicated to supporting contemporary artists in and around the Middle East. This summer, The Bidoun Library will travel to the Serpentine Gallery to launch a special issue of Bidoun magazine produced during the revolution in Egypt. Bidoun will also be continuing their investigation into the diverse history of printed matter related to the Middle East, as well as exploring the swiftly changing state of UK libraries, focusing on London.

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This week’s Bidoun Library Seminar…

Tales From the Bidoun Library, Vol. I
Intercontinentalism: A Partial History of Magazine Diplomacy

Michael C. Vazquez

with an introduction by
Sharifa Rhodes-Pitts

Saturday 13 August 2011
3pm
Free, no booking required

Leading writers, scholars and artists in dialogue with the Bidoun editorial collective in a series of Saturday seminars. 

In the 1960s, an array of state-sponsored international magazines fought pitched battles — against imperialism or communism and/or their own governments — across the entire length of the first, second, and third worlds. Michael Vazquez presents an illustrated lecture on pivotal moments in periodical diplomacy, with especial focus on Transition (Kampala / Accra), Tricontinental (Havana), and Lotus: Afro-Asian Writing (Cairo / Beirut / Tunis).

Michael C Vazquez is Senior Editor at Bidoun and a member of the Bidoun Library group. He was formerly Executive Editor of the revived Transition (Cambridge, MA). He writes often about music and magazines for Bidoun and other venues.
Sharifa Rhodes-Pitts is a writer whose work has appeared in Transition, The New York Times, Harper’s, Bidoun, and Essence among others. Her book, Harlem is Nowhere, the first volume of a trilogy on black utopias, is just out in the UK from Granta Books.

About the Bidoun Library:
Founded in 2009, The Bidoun Library is a peripatetic resource of books, periodicals and ephemera developed by Bidoun Projects, a not-for-profit publishing, curatorial and educational initiative dedicated to supporting contemporary artists in and around the Middle East. This summer, The Bidoun Library will travel to the Serpentine Gallery to launch a special issue of Bidoun magazine produced during the revolution in Egypt. Bidoun will also be continuing their investigation into the diverse history of printed matter related to the Middle East, as well as exploring the swiftly changing state of UK libraries, focusing on London.

We are really excited that Slavs and Tatars  will be presenting their latest publication, Molla Nasreddin: The Magazine that Would’ve, Could’ve, Should’ve.  Molla Nasreddin is a new book examining the history of the legendary Azeribaijani periodical, which was arguably the most important Muslim satirical political magazine of the 20th century. Featuring illustrations reminiscent of a Caucasus Daumier, Molla Nasreddin was read by an audience that stretched from Morocco to Iran, and addressed issues such as gender equality, education, Western involvement in Arab affairs, and Islam’s integration of modernity – all of which are as relevant and pressing to today’s global audience as when the magazine was first published a century ago.

For the book’s UK launch, Slavs and Tatars will present Molla Nasreddin: Embrace Your Antithesis, including: a discussion of the book’s historical context; a case study of the complex Caucasus region; and the issue of self-censorship both then and now. Guests will be offered their choice of red or white tea, in a reference to the two major geopolitical narratives of the 20th and 21st centuries, Communism and Islam, between which Slavs and Tatars and Molla Nasreddin navigate.

See here for an interview that Resonance fm’s Six Pillars to Persia recorded with the Slavs and Tatars at the Sharjah Biennial earlier this year: http://podcasts.resonancefm.com/archives/7309 (thanks Fari Bradley!!!)  

Slavs and Tatars is a faction of polemics and intimacies devoted to an area east of the former Berlin Wall in Germany and west of the Great Wall of China, known as Eurasia. Their Friendship of Nations: Polish Shi’ite Showbiz was recently presented at the 10th Sharjah Biennial and they are currently working on exhibitions at Secession Vienna and Künstlerhaus Stuttgart scheduled to open in 2012.

www.slavsandtatars.com