Leading edge conference explores the social catalysts for last year’s riots
One year on since riots erupted across the country, leading academics and commentators will provide a fresh perspective on the social issues which led to last year’s events at a new one day conference.
The aftermath of last year's riots. Photograph by Ben Graville.
Organised by the Weeks Centre for Social and Policy Research at London South Bank University (LSBU) and the Institute for Policy Studies in Education at London Metropolitan University, the conference will explore the relationship between the riots and the Coalition Government's austerity policies on the 28 September at LSBU.
Challenging the view that the social science community has failed to engage with the issues raised by the riots, this conference promises a diverse and exciting range of presentations. Speakers will offer fresh interpretations and analysis of issues including: youth unemployment; stop and search; political activism; parenting; and media reporting.
Professor Yvette Taylor, Head of the Weeks Centre, said: "The Weeks Centre and the Institute for Policy Studies in Education are committed to challenging inequalities in education, employment, families and relationships, and the criminal justice system. The conference brings together social scientists, activists and commentators, all linking the riots to wider inequalities. Attending to these injustices is the necessary practice of a 'public sociology' itself threatened by Coalition policies on education."
The conference features a stellar line-up of speakers, including Professor Les Back from Goldsmiths University; Professor Val Gillies from the Weeks Centre for Social and Policy Research; Owen Jones, author of Chavs; Gillian Slovo, playwright for the play 'The Riots' and Dr Clifford Stott from Aarhus University, Denmark and co-author of 'Mad Mobs and Englishmen? Myths and realities of the riots 2011'.
Dr Kim Allen, one of the conference organisers, said: "As London and the UK bask in the media adulation and feel-good effect of the Olympics, it is easy to forget the tumultuous events which occurred on the streets a year ago. This conference will offer a reflective space for debate about the long-term impact of those events and their significance.
"Last year the London Mayor Boris Johnson and Prime Minister David Cameron dismissed the need for any sociological analysis, claiming the rioters were simply driven by pure criminality, greed and opportunism. This conference challenges this, refocusing on increasingly hostile conditions of coalition policies, including shocking rates of youth unemployment, rising tuition fees, the withdrawal of the Educational Maintenance Allowance, cuts to Sure Start and an overhaul of welfare provision."
Further information on the conference, including the full programme can be found here: http://www.lsbu.ac.uk/business/training.shtml#TheRiotsConference
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Collisions, Coalitions and Riotous Subjects: The Riots one year on
Posted: 7th August 2012
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