This Charming Man: An Interview with Pete Doherty

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Phil Whaite spoke to Pete Doherty of The Libertines after a Love Music Hate Racism gig that filled the London Astoria.

Why did you feel it was important to do this gig?

There's a point you reach before you're perverted and tainted by all the things that drag you into the music business, like avarice or a lust for fame. The original reason why I started was some feeling of community, equality, wanting to fight for things you believe in. Any kid who's gone to a state school knows what it's all about - bullying, racism. And you've just got to make a stand.

Benjamin Zephaniah: Rage of Empire

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Hassan Mahamdallie speaks to Benjamin Zephaniah about the poet and author's art and politics.

I was struck by the Guardian article about you turning down the OBE in which you wrote, 'I woke up on the morning of 13 November wondering how the government could be overthrown and what could replace it, and then I noticed a letter from the prime minister's office.'

The Gene Machine

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Sir John Sulston, former director of the human genome mapping project, talks to John Parrington.

We hear a lot nowadays about the genome project initiating a revolution in science, and that we're now living in the post-genomic age. In your book, you say that shouldn't really be called the post-genome age but the post-hype age. What did you mean by that?

Middle East: The Light on the Horizon

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The Egyptian writer Nawal El Saadawi spoke to Wael Fateen about women, globalisation and the Middle East.

How do see you the anti-capitalist movement at the moment?

In Porto Alegre the slogan was 'Another world is possible'. I believe this is true because the majority of the people are now against the system and they are now organised regardless of religion, gender or colour. The movement has a very politicised agenda. This is what I call unveiling the mind against the mainstream media. I was in the US on 11 September, and I could see the role the media played in brainwashing Americans by using the word 'terrorism'.

Mekin Sense Outta Nansense

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Linton Kwesi Johnson spoke to Yuri Prasad about poetry, music and the fight against racism.

What was it like to be a poet and a black political activist in the 1970s? How did the two come together and what kind of issues did you take up?

I came to poetry via politics. I discovered black literature as a consequence of my involvement in the Black Panther movement. We never came across any black literature or literature about blacks at school. When we did history--we did British history, we never did anything about slavery.


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