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Sean Michael Wilson et al, Fight the Power! A visual history of Protest Among the English-Speaking Peoples

New Internationalist Publications Ltd; 192pp; £9.99

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Activism and resistance – both violent and nonviolent – take centre stage in the New Internationalist’s latest comic book (Fight the Power! A visual history of Protest Among the English-Speaking Peoples; 192pp; £9.99). Written by Séan Michael Wilson (Parecomic) and Benjamin Dickson, and illustrated by John Spelling, Adam Parson and the wonderful Hunt Emerson (How to be Rich, Ratz), it covers fourteen separate struggles, ranging from the Swing riots in early 19th century England (for which 252 people were sentenced to death), to the Suffragettes (pictured), the Australian general strike of 1917 (I’d never heard of it either), resistance to Thatcher’s hated poll tax (where non-payment was actually a more significant factor than the infamous ‘police riot’ of March 1990, with some 18 million refusing to pay out of a total population of 50 million, including 10 million children) and the contemporary Occupy Movement. Successes and failures are both represented, and a second volume, covering non-English-speaking peoples is apparently in the pipeline. All in all, an accessible and engaging survey that should help to counteract our contemporary historical amnesia.