Friday, June 11, 2010

A phwoar for blood and insurrection (almost) in Stoke Newington!

Report from the Stoke Newington Literary Festival, starring Farah Damji, Darcus Howe, Diane Abbott, Suzanne Moore and Gavin James Bower

In rainy Stoke Newington last Saturday, black and white did not make a murky shade of grey. Farah Damji was there to talk about her book Try Me, which Frances Lynn (shortly to be interviewed on Madame Arcati) has described as "gripping, unputdownable and explosive", and the con of multiculturalism with a little help from her mate Darcus Howe.

We didn't really get enough of Farah on the book which earned her the title "London's Most Dangerous Woman". Darcus Howe held forth about that subject most dear to his darkened Black Panther heart, racism and multiculturalism.

There was a standing room only situation at the event which had been heaviliy oversubscribed. Present in the audience were the Mail on Sunday's fragrant Suzanne Moore and the not-so-lovely Labour leader contender Diane Abbott. Political watchers will know that Darcus dissed Suzanne and favoured Diane in the recent by-elections at which Suzanne dared to stand against the rolly incumbent.

There was a fraught moment which made even the novelist and notoriously smooth Gavin James Bower look a little anxious when Suzanne asked why her children, when they were in nursery school, should be made to learn Black History at the expense of other important events. Farah agreed and said she supported a transcultural historical curriculum. But Darcus said that the Black History fight was won after tears, blood and riots in the streets: in one case he was even falsely accused by the London Evening Standard of congratulating rioters for smashing open a policeman's head.

It should be noted that Abbott fought for supplementary schools and Darcus has been a long term supporter of her politics and attacked Suzanne personally before even meeting her. The argument was to study St Patrick as well as Malcolm X. Darcus rolled his eyes and the luvvies of Stoke Newington let out a collective roar, or was it a phwoar, at the scent of blood and the sight of insurrection.

Since we have Black History Month (October in the UK) please can we also have Pink Faggot Month, Asian Hottie of the Month and My Favourite Fascist Month, please? Candidates may self-nominate on the back of a £50 note and send here...

To buy a copy of Farah Damji's Try Me, click here

22 comments:

J MacFarlane said...

Firstly how dare the bastards have a go at Farah. Secondly black history? I looked at a book on the Vietnam War (I recall it first hand as a child). This is not Herodutus but point scoring. Wankers like La Abbott now stay VERY quiet on Blakelock being beheaded (look at the "historical" accounts he was merely attacked with machetes) this is at variance with my own eye witness acount of Brixton 81/85 et al.

DRF said...

Edgar Allan Poe went to school in Stoke Newington. So I hope they celebrated this opium visionary who prefigured Modernism and Surrealism.

Duncan Fallowell

Madame Arcati said...

And Edgar's buried in Baltimore, *sniff*.

Koontee Kuntee said...

This is not a Madame Arcati posting. Take it off NOW.

Green Goddess said...

Most Darluingest. Didn't see you there. Clearly you have a "mole" and your back channel is working extremely well. Firstly no one had a go at me and it was great fun. Black history? Who cares? Malcolm X v St Patrick? Gimme Madonna anyday.

Madame Arcati said...

I have familiars and they lurk here and there and everywhere. Serpents sprout from my head and plant dragon's teeth. To mix legend and lore.

Farah Damji said...

I'm fucking suing!

Anonymous said...

I can't make head or tail of this report. I shall paste into my universal transplator.

Anonymous said...

Translator, I mean.

Anonymous said...

Gaaad! You Brits and colour. Dulux!

J MacFarlane said...

I'm Sue Fucking!

Anonymous said...

We have White History (alias History) so Black History is an essential addition. In time the two shall meet.

Statistic said...

I have only to read the dread words Stoke Newington to feel I have been mugged.

Anonymous said...

It's all Turks up there now. Coming on straight, bisexual shagging after lights out.

suzanne moore said...

Simply this . The audience wanted way more of Farah and way less of Darcus. My point was unlike Madam Abbott my kids were schooled in Hackney. I did not need a lazy 70s revisionist history via Howe. My child at 3 knew who Malcolm X was. When I asked about this version of history taught at nursery school I was pleased to be supported by sorry to say, yes mostly black parents .
Many in the room I felt dealt with complexities in a way that was dismissed by the imperious Howe.

Peter Palladas said...

Macaulay's 'History of England' is the thing, its τέλος the perfect Victorian gentleman.

Farah Watch said...

Lovely to see Ms D get her life back on track with a little help from her friends. Who was that ageing hippy Rocker guy she was pretending not to be with? Looked like Allan Jenkins but fading, dumpier?

Anonymous said...

Dianne Abbott tried to hijack the show. Farah and Gavin restrained her.

Most surreal moment? When she went off on one about her doubled majority in her constituency in response to the question "Why aren't there more ethnic minorities at this event? Guess they forgot to flypost the estates.
Second most surreal moment, when Darus strode off the stage like Goliath towards Dianne just as Farah was reading an extract. They held forth loudly in the back and Farah said
"Darcus be quiet." Rather amazingly he was.

Madame Arcati said...

I have advised Farah to avoid those born under the sign of Aries.

Green Goddess said...

And Farah like a good devotee of Madame is taking your sound advice. No more Aries. Or Taurus.

Anonymous said...

Madame should steer clear of politics - and of Damji.

Liberty said...

Mmm, Gavin can rub my bunions whenever he likes.