RED RAG (cover illustration)

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 March 31st (scan / txt); the next one is due out on April 14th.

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 over five years it had never sold a single copy.

In this issue (scan / txt): several hundred people pass through the doors of the old dole offices in South Street during a ten day Squat, with over a hundred and fifty attending the various workshops. They produce the largest screenprint in Reading, some 30 foot long by 12 high. The miners are still on strike but you'd have to look hard to notice it; Wokingham Tory M.P. William van Straubenzee gets quite uppity when he's told that smoking can result in cancer and cancer can result in death; Ladybird proposes a new method of timekeeping; and the Women's Press launch their sci fi series.