Dr Christopher Murray Grieve, who wrote under the pen-name of Hugh Macdiarmid, was the greatest Scottish poet of the twentieth century. Best-known for what he called “Lallans”, a literary form of the Lowland Scots language that he developed, he also made use of English.
At different stages of his life he was a supporter of Scottish nationalism and communism. Famously, he stood for the Communist Party against Tory Prime Minister, Sir Alec Douglas-Home, in the Kinross & West Perthshire constituency in the 1964 general election, as part of an unsuccessful bid to get television time for the Party. His A Sprig of White Heather in the Future’s Lapel, written for former Communist MP Willie Gallacher on the occasion of the latter’s 80th birthday, is particularly famous among Britain’s Communists.
Here we feature Why I Choose Red, one of McDiarmid’s strongly political poems.
Vasko Popa was a Serbian poet of Romanian descent. Born in modern day Romania, Popa spent his life between Serbia and Romania studying in both Belgrade and Bucharest. His poetic life was often concerned with Socialist Realism, an artistic form which focuses primarily on celebrating socialist life or uplifting the role of ordinary folk in contrast to romantic ideas of aloof heroes and divinely given gifts.
The August meeting of the Communist Party executive agreed a schedule of events to step-up commemoration of its centenary. These include major online meetings and conferences: Cable street forever! (4 October), Salute the Volunteers for Liberty in Spain (17 October), Launch of Communist Party history (Mid-November) and a conference on The Future of Work (5 December).
Like other regions of the UK and many other parts of the world, Cornwall has been on lockdown since the end of March with many workplaces having shut down and many workers having been furloughed. Governmental failings have been repeated here, as elsewhere, with lack of PPE and protection for essential workers and vulnerable people.
As part of the Matchroom Boxing “Fight Camp” Series, Brixton’s Dillian Whyte took on the Russian Alexander Povetkin for a chance to challenge WBC Heavyweight world champion
Tyson Fury. After a long arduous battle for Whyte to get a mandatory position, and Povetkins attempts to regain his former glory, the two met on Saturday in front of no crowd to settle it.
Che Guevara was an Argentinean-born, Cuban revolutionary leader who alongside Fidel Castro goes down in history as one of the greatest figures of the Cuban Revolution and arguably the 20th Century. One of his portraits, from the lens of Alberto Korda, is one the world’s most reproduced images.