White Wales and Black Lives Matter

Despite protestations to the contrary, the structural imbalance of the Welsh public sphere can easily lead to situations where even a simple misunderstanding can reinforce some of the worst tropes latent in our collective culture. People of colour considered to have too much righteous energy for their own good and consequently having to qualify theirContinue reading “White Wales and Black Lives Matter”

Wales beyond borders: nationalism and the climate crisis

(This article was originally published in translation by O’r Pedwar Gwynt in June 2019) In recent months we have witnessed two distinct-but-overlapping protest movements mobilising throughout Wales and converging on our capital city. First, the Welsh branch of the international Extinction Rebellion movement took to the streets during March and April, in which activists and,Continue reading “Wales beyond borders: nationalism and the climate crisis”

The reification of Welsh rugby

A shiver down the collective spine of the Welsh nation: international rugby (or, one presumes, that which is presented in the English language) may soon disappear from free-to-air television. This has obviously created a degree of collective consternation about the implication for Welsh mass culture, and rugby’s apparently totemic place within it. This mass panicContinue reading “The reification of Welsh rugby”

The Election That Never Took Place

When assessing the media coverage of December’s general election, it would be reasonable to conclude that the politics of Wales barely featured at all. It is well documented that there is little space in ‘mainstream’ British media forms to develop and articulate a complex, coherent discourse that is recognisably Welsh and speaks specifically to andContinue reading “The Election That Never Took Place”

Unserious ideas for serious times

It’s a familiar melancholy, seeing Jeremy Corbyn, like Leanne Wood before him, becoming a more radical yet more marginalised voice within his party, post-leadership. Both Corbyn and Wood were deemed to have failed electorally by their internal detractors, but achieved far more than they’ll ever be given credit for by changing the conversation around whatContinue reading “Unserious ideas for serious times”

Chartists in the Newport Afterlife

To live and grow up in Newport is to be irrevocably intertwined with the historical forces that built this city. Symbols of the past are etched into the landscape: what we might call our ‘industrial heritage’ is all around us. But these totems are not fossilised relics, and they’re not engaged with passively: they’re theContinue reading “Chartists in the Newport Afterlife”