RED RAG (cover illustration)

Back Issues

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Established 1979
20p! Fortnightly! Fun!

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 1987; the latest issue is dated June 2nd (scan / txt); the next one was due out on the 16th.

Red Rag, or Reading's only newspaper, had a noble tradition of misspelling, mixed metaphors, wrong facts, confused political judgements and a readership in its heyday 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? In its first seven years it never sold a single copy; but now after much soul-searching a price had been put on the Rag's head...

In this issue (scan / txt): Thatcher's second term draws to a close. So prepare for the "Festival Season", highpoint of which is the solstice bash at Stonehenge, as seen on TV. Or for National "Marking The Routes Day", when people all over the country will mark the routes of nuclear convoys. Help Reading Community Farm Project establish a city farm. Go watch films at the Hexagon, which boasts Dolby sound and Reading's biggest screen. Or maybe you could write a piece for the Rag?

No copy means no Red Rag, so it's up to you. There are lots of people who claim to work in a collective way, so it's startling that so few seem to apply this to their fortnightly Rag.