From the Picket Line

For those of us in UK aca­demia, it’s been impossible to miss the strikes over the last four weeks, with aca­dem­ics from across the coun­try stand­ing their ground for a fair and equit­able pen­sion. There are many incred­ibly detail­ing the devel­op­ments and explain­ing how this is about for a walk of life that just doesn’t have to be sub­ject to the warped val­ues of the Neo‐liberal pro­ject.

Per­son­ally, what I’ve found inspir­a­tion­al is the cov­er­age from the pick­et line and the industry of oth­ers. Nat­ur­ally, there have been the marches, the ban­ners, and the teach‐ins. But, with such gen­er­at­ive care and warmth, what has brought spe­cial cheer to me have been the many out­stand­ing examples of cre­at­ive impulse: of craft (like that recor­ded by Jac­ob Phelps below), of design (from Katja May, Kat Jung­nick­el, etc. at Gold­smiths), and of poetry (no less from the fab­ulous Michael Rosen).

Giv­en it would be hard to add to all the amaz­ing com­ment­ary on the pen­sion strikes, what I want to pay spe­cial homage to here is the dance (and a little song) from the pick­et line. Brows­ing the not‐so‐distant twit­ter archive, I’ve tried to dig out a few out the high­lights from the last few weeks that can’t help bring a smile to my face. It must be said, that among all the won­der­ful examples, Lan­caster goes gold hands down for the PEF (Pick­et Excel­lence Frame­work), and Imo­gen Tyler deserves a spe­cial award of excel­lence for her unwaver­ing com­mit­ment to impact dis­sem­in­a­tion, Twitter‐wide.

Here’s to all the dan­cers (and musi­cians) on the pick­et line

For example, from Jason Hick­el, Dav­id Kerno­han, via Medi­um, etc. Kar­en Gregory has put togeth­er a list of UCU Strike Read­ings. Lucy Robinson’s strike scrap­book also deserves a spe­cial men­tion.
See by Six points on the eve of the UCU strike Jam­ie Wood­cock


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