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17th June 2022, 7pm


i Cafe Ingram Street, Glasgow

Red Book Group

Popular Education Network members have helped set up a new reading to explore Socialist themes and topics through works of fiction.

Red Book Group

Time & Location

17th June 2022, 7pm

i Cafe Ingram Street, Glasgow

About The Event

We hope this group will allow members to explore political ideas in a creative and engaging way, develop members’ political education and also provide an alternative space for us to meet and socialise.

Our first meeting will take place on Friday 17 June at 7.00pm, in the upstairs meeting room at iCafe in Ingram Street, Glasgow, or alternatively by using the Zoom login details below.

Meeting Link:

Meeting ID: 890 3099 3112

Passcode: 329166

Friday 17 June: Just the Plague (2021) by Ludmila Ulitskaya (144pp.)

Described as ‘Contagion meets The Death of Stalin’ (LRB, Dec 2021), Just the Plague opens with researcher Rudolf Maier accidently infecting himself with bubonic plague. With an incubation period of only twenty-four hours and a fatality rate of near one hundred percent, the main protagonist quickly becomes ill, but not before the disease has already begun to spread throughout Moscow. Doctors, families, politburo members and international dignitaries find themselves bound to each other by a track, trace, and isolate policy, carried out by the ruthless NKVD. Originally written as a screenplay for perestroika-era Soviet television in 1988 but remaining unpublished until 2021, the vivid, fast-paced narrative draws the reader into a medical, political, and social crisis that is uncannily familiar.

Friday 22 July: The Redundancy of Courage (1991) by Timothy Mo (408pp.)

Shortlisted for the 1991 Booker Prize for Fiction, The Redundancy of Courage uses the fictional island of Danu in Southeast Asia as a setting for a retelling of the Indonesian annexation of East Timor in 1975. The book is narrated by Adolph Ng, a homosexual Chinese businessman who increasingly finds himself drawn into the conflict, yet paradoxically viewed by others as being outside of it due to his ‘over-educated colonial’ background. While Ng initially tries to remain apolitical to the events that surround him, this is a book that is overtly political throughout. An intensely gripping, evocative and darkly funny novel, this pointed study of colonialism offers a universal tale of struggle of uneven forces, militarism, and personal courage.

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