An event to celebrate the launch of two new publications released by Mute Books: Agit Disco and Anomie/Bonhomie & Other Writings.
Agit Disco. Conceived & compiled by Stefan Szczelkun, edited by Anthony Iles
Agit Disco collects the playlists of its 23 writers to tell the story of how music has politically influenced and inspired them. The book provides a multi-genre survey of political musics, from a wide range of viewpoints, that goes beyond protest songs into the darker hinterlands of musical meaning. Each playlist is annotated and illustrated. The collection grew organically with an exchange of homemade CDs and images. These images, with their DIY graphics, are used to give the playlists a visual materiality.
Almost everyone makes selections of music to play to themselves and friends. Agit Disco intends to show the importance of this creative activity and its place in our formation as political beings. This activity is at odds with to the usual process of selection by the mainstream media - in which the most potent musical agents of change are, whenever possible, erased from the public airwaves.
Agit Disco Selectors: Sian Addicott, Louise Carolin, Peter Conlin, Mel Croucher, Martin Dixon, John Eden, Sarah Falloon, Simon Ford, Peter Haining, Stewart Home, Tom Jennings, DJ Krautpleaser, Roger McKinley, Micheline Mason, Tracey Moberly, Luca Paci, Room 13 – Lochyside Scotland, Howard Slater, Johnny Spencer, Stefan Szczelkun, Andy T, Neil Transpontine, Tom Vague
Anomie/Bonhomie & Other Writings. By Howard Slater
In this collection of writings, Howard Slater improvises on what Walter Benjamin could have meant by the phrase 'affective classes'. Slater is inspired by the possible implications of Benjamin's 'messianic shard' and is led towards a therapeutic micro-politics by way of a mourning for the Workers' Movement and a grappling with the 'becomings of capital'. The essay, 'Anomie/Bonhomie', is the set piece of this book which also features tributary texts and poems drawn from the past ten years. These supplementary texts approach such themes as exodus, species-being, surrealist precedents, poetic language and the possibilities for collective 'affective' practices to combat capitalism's colonisation of the psyche.
Howard Slater is a volunteer play therapist, sometime writer and ex-housing worker who lives in East London. Whilst he has been writing since the early 1980s he has mainly been published in small press magazines, independent publishing initiatives and web sites.