P006 Book review: Revolting Prostitutes

Saskia, 30 April 2019

In E028 we talked about Revolting Prostitutes: The fight for sex workers’ rights by Juno Mac and Molly Smith. Here is my take on the book, and as I said in the podcast, I can’t recommend it enough!

This review originally appeared in Networkthe British Sociological Association magazine.

Sex work is one of those tortured debates in feminism in which there only seem to be two sides: sex-positive feminists posit sex work as a liberating act that allows women to exercise their bodily autonomy, whilst anti-prostitution feminists organise on the basis that sex work is the ultimate objectification of women’s bodies under patriarchy. In Revolting Prostitutes, Mac and Smith sweep away this binary to argue instead that sex work is work…Keep reading.

P005: The Road to Nowhere: Reimagining the English North-South Divide

Saskia, 14 May 2018

In Saskia’s talk from a Royal Geographical Society conference in April(her first time speaking at an academic conference!), she looks at how Englishness, ‘race’ and class have played out in debates around Brexit. Taking David Goodhart’s book ‘The Road to Somewhere’ as an influential example, she discusses how the division the British media has made between the Northern ‘white working-class’ and the London ‘metropolitan elite’ plays into racist nationalism by positioning white people as English and people of colour as ‘other’…Keep reading.

P004: Fifty years on from ‘Rivers of Blood’

Tissot, 20 April 2018

A brief history lesson (I think more than ever EVERYONE needs to know their history, especially with given the UK’s current identity crisis): today is the 50th anniversary of Enoch Powell’s ‘Rivers of Blood’ speech. It’s amazing that parts of the speech are still echoed by individuals such as Tommy Robinson and groups like Britain First, as well as in the mainstream media and government policy…Keep reading.

P003: Becoming Greek

Saskia, 21 March 2018

My dad has a new passport. This is not remarkable in itself – we’ve always had enough money to go on holiday abroad, and Dad occasionally travels for work. I can’t imagine not having a passport. What is strange about this one is that it’s Greek.

If you have seen my surname, you might be thinking, ‘Obviously it’s a Greek passport – you’re Greek!’ And yes, ‘Papadakis’ is the Greek equivalent of ‘Smith’, and as my dad’s first name is John, he has possibly the most stereotypically Greek name there is…Keep reading.

P002: Brexit: The consequences of forgetting

Tissot, 9 March 2018

‘RESOLVED to substitute for historic rivalries a fusion of their essential interests; to establish, by creating an economic community, the foundation of a broad and independent community among peoples long divided by bloody conflicts; and to lay the bases of institutions capable of giving direction to their future common destiny’.

Taken from the Treaty constituting the European Coal and Steel Community.

Lofty ideals. Fast forward 70 years, and it seems we have collectively forgotten how the world looked just a human lifetime ago.

Keep reading.

P001: Black Panther: The great black hope

Tissot, 14 February 2018

With the Black Panther movie looming, one of the narratives that I’m hearing a lot is: does this film have the power to change the face of Hollywood?

By this I’m assuming that people mean: does this movie have the power to change the racial bias that runs through Western cinema and media? Black actors are normally cast through the prism of racial stereotypes; street thugs, drug dealers, sidekicks to white leads, prostitutes, or hyper-violent, hyper-sexualised, child-like comedic characters. If you’re black, you know all these tropes and have seen them countless times…Keep reading.