Auteur: Hernon, Ian
Sub titel: Civil insurrection from Peterloo to the present day
Riots have always been with us. They have been a counter-weight to oppression, or an opportunity for plunder, or a conduit for passion and anger, for as long as British history has been recorded. Fear of 'the mob' has gripped successive British monarchs and governments down the centuries. Calvin Coolidge pointed out: 'The only difference between a mob and a trained army is organisation.' "Riot!" covers, with a reporter's eye, almost 200 years of civil disturbance on mainland Britain, and gives a voice to some of the remarkable men and women involved. Ian Hernon shows that resistance played a part, not always beneficially, in the creation of proper parliamentary democracy, the welfare state, the trade union movement, the rights of immigrants and civil liberties. All of these, it can be argued, are under renewed attack today. Hernon tells the story of a largely unacknowledged tradition of violent protest in Britain, a seamless thread from the martyrs of Peterloo to the drug-fuelled street violence of today. Throughout the entire period the ugly roar of a mob has done as much as, if not more than, the measured debate in the parliamentary chamber which, ironically, the mob did so much to create.
2006, 272 pag., Euro 33,65
Pluto Press, London, ISBN 745325386
This page last updated on: 13-1-2015