Back Issues

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Established 1979
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These are the back issues of Red Rag. They'll be posted here every (usually) two weeks on or around the anniversary of their original publication. We're currently reissuing 1985; the latest issue is dated November 10th (scan / txt); the next one is due out on the 24th.

Red Rag, or Reading's only newspaper, had a noble tradition of misspelling, mixed metaphors, wrong facts, confused political judgements and a readership of 4000. It printed practically everything it got sent ("except poetry and party political broadcasts, provided it isn't racist, sexist, militarist or otherwise supportive of oppression"). It aimed to provide a decent alternative coverage of local news and issues from a radical non-aligned position; to promote subversive and creative initiatives; to provide a forum for unorthodox views; to allow some sort of co-existence between a huge variety of interests. An indispensible source of local information? a forum for the self-indulgent and self-important? a continuous experiment in collective, de-centralised organisation? Who knew? But in six years it had never sold a single copy.

In this issue (scan / txt): the black people of South Africa have repeatedly called for a boycott of South African goods; anti-apartheid campaigners in Reading draw attention to this by filling their supermarket trolleys with Outspan oranges and then leaving the store empty-handed. The National Front have now established a branch in Reading and NF stickers have been appearing around town - some with razor blades behind them; the van is ready for another winter of regular food runs to the women of Greenham; Veggie Dining is happening again; and whatever Box Office is doing for its anniversary party is so subversive that we can't read it, let alone write it down.