Geographies of Violence

Processed with Blackie

“We are seeking original artistic contributions both for the cover and interior of an anthology titled, ‘Madness, Violence and Power: A Radical Anthology’. The book includes 20 chapters that traverse personal narratives of violence; institutional and institutionalized practices of knowledge production about ‘mental health’ and ‘mental illness’ informed by neoliberal capitalist logic; legislated violence done to people through social policy and law; and the places and spaces in which violence happens. The book seeks to challenge conventional understandings of madness and distress and give value to the knowledge and experience of people as mental health service users/survivors. Chapters are organized by four themes: 1) First hand accounts of violence; 2) prevailing problems; 3) law as violence; and 4) geographies of violence.

We are seeking one full colour image to be used as the front cover of the book, and four original black and white images to be used in the interior of the book to introduce each theme.

We would prefer images that speak directly to the subject matter rather than an abstract or pattern kind of design…

The book is co-edited by:

Andrea Daley, School of Social Work, York University, Toronto, Canada

Lucy Costa, Empowerment Council, Toronto, Canada

Peter Beresford, University of Essex, England…”

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Hardcore Neepsend

Walking along Neepsend Lane from the Farfield Inn to Mowbray Street on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon makes me think of ‘Heart of Darkness’ and ‘Journey to the End of the Night’. There’s something about the scale of the industrial and post-industrial landscape, something about the unnatural width of the road that makes the journey of less than a mile deeply uncomfortable, but it also represents the epitome of Sheffield, the essence of the city, replete with beauty and fascination, as well as desolation and dread.

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Heavygate Road – A Heavy Weight – Devil Gate Drive

I walk out of my front door, turn left and I’m on Heavygate Road in 30 seconds. When you head down towards Commonside, you’re overlooked by the arse of a golden Buddha set in an alcove that used to house a bell when Sheffield Buddhist Centre was a church. It’s swarming with red robed Tibetan baldies round here. And middle-class Lamas, Swamis, Rinpoches…

Download: Heavygate Road A Heavy Weight Devil Gate Drive

Grey Soils

Grey soils, scaffolding, wind speed… “We are all in the ghetto. The ghetto is walled in. Outside the ghetto, the lords of death reign and the train is waiting close by.”

There’s a deeply rooted conservatism at the heart of many supposedly radical movements which manifests as limiting group think. There are no reliable critical voices. The injection of populism elevates the obscure whilst leaving its solipsistic irrelevance untouched. We don’t live in the moment and we’re not generally capable of purposeful action. How can we go beyond our feeling of monstrous disenchantment without engineering false realities?

It’s not that nothing’s going on. It’s more that so much is going on in the world of submission, domination, victory and defeat that there’s no time to reflect upon and record it. Righteous refusal of cheap representations of joy as a form of poison has its virtues but impotent rage becomes a burden. What do we do after registering our rage? How do we minimise the impact of the unwelcome and intrusive presence?

Where is the joy in the day? We can feel our discontent as a tightening in the chest. The city is unnerving, and populated by volatile fear spreaders. Our tiredness is so profound that we cannot think or feel clearly. Tiredness is the enemy of life when it does not lead to sleep. Or tiredness takes things back to a core or centre that is hidden by the play of liveliness and makes us strangers to ourselves. To be a stranger to oneself is to deny the reality of what one experiences and knows, to submit to the will of other people, to abdicate personal responsibility, to adventure in groundless metaphysical realms in an attempt to flee from tedious states.

The negators of truth are our constant enemy. Our enemies are violent and evil men who will seek to do us harm if we stand against them. Revealing our suffering will mean nothing to them. We should not be grateful if the intensity of their oppression seems to diminish for a time. We should know that this is incidental, rather than a sign of goodwill towards us.

Do not run away from reality. Do not indulge in escapist flights. Decide that it’s time for action. This is war. They are the enemy. We will not surrender. We will gain victory. Feel the uncertainty, hatred, contempt and fear, feel the joy of the prospect of winning. Accept that cruel and evil men can do whatever they fancy. And realise that we can do what we choose to stand against them.