Posts tagged verso books

What Would Radical Happiness Look Like?

How can you be happy when others are suffering? It’s a question that’s bothered me throughout my life. Part of the problem, I think, is that in Western societies, we have defined the pursuit of happiness as an individualistic endeavour. And so I lived for years in London and New York, doggedly pursuing happiness while stepping over the homeless people on the pavement. In Radical Happiness, Lynne Segal suggests an alternative approach. Radical happiness is essentially collective happiness, achieved not by closing your eyes to other people’s misery but by actively… Read More

On the violence of borders

I recently visited Ceuta, a piece of the north African coast that belongs to Spain and is hence part of “Europe”. It was a very strange and disturbing experience to cross that border so easily just by showing my British passport, when many people with different-coloured passports die trying to do the same thing. Here’s a photo I took of the border fence. The houses to the left are in Spain; the hillside to the right is in Morocco. There’s also a small village on the Moroccan side, just out of… Read More

Reviewer and reviewed

I’ve got a bit behind with my  reviewing on this site, but had a book review published today in online literary magazine Review 31. I wrote about a new book on urban explorers called Explore Everything: Place Hacking the City by Bradley L. Garrett (Verso Books). Here’s a quick extract from my article: At first glance, ‘place hacking’ may seem like just another form of escapist thrill-seeking. Sneak into a construction site, poke around inside Battersea Power Station, run along train tracks to discover abandoned Underground stations. Dodge the security guards… Read More