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Protestors for 'Academics for Peace'
Academics for Peace outside Istanbul Court, before the trial on the 27th of September. Photo Credit: https://twitter.com/barisakademik

Soon after leaving power in 1989, the Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet coined a phrase that synthetized his view of University in one sentence: “To the university you go to study, not to think. And, if there is any time left, there are sports”. For Pinochet, it seems, there was a clear difference between studying and thinking, being the former to remain in the confines of authorised knowledge of (some) books. To think, in his perspective, meant the practice of reflecting about social reality, to become a critical voice, entailing the risk of becoming politically active. In other words, for Pinochet, to think was framed as a dangerous practice, as going too far, as a threat to the status quo.

The Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan seems to entertain a similar conceptual distinction in his ongoing attempts to model higher education as a place where no critical thinking is allowed. After the failed military coup attempt on July 15, Erdoğan’s government has initiated a massive ‘purge’, which has affected not only the military but all institutions of public service, including universities and

Goldsmiths Taekwondo Team

The past Sunday, Goldsmiths Taekwondo competed in the first ever LUSL Taekwondo Competition hosted by the University of East London. Although it was a small competition, with approximately 90 competitors, the performance of the team is acknowledged and highly praised. The Goldsmiths Taekwondo team has performed exceptionally well in past competitions,  and has proven itself once again. Having brought nine fighters, the team came back with sevenmedals; three gold and four bronze. 

The day kicked off with black belt Sophia Doe’s match, who put up a great fight against her opponent, but unfortunately lost by six points; and was awarded a bronze medal. Shortly following, Njabulo Mkhize, who started training only last year, put on an exciting fight. After landing some excellent shots, the match was tied, leading to a golden point round. Unfortunately, NJ’s opponent landed a solid push kick, winning the fight by a single point. Goldsmiths’ newest Taekwondo members, joining the team just in September were just as keen to compete. OrgilThompson and Desmond Pitt put on an impressive performance for the short time they had been training, with Desmond landing a bronze in his first ever competition. Goldsmiths Taekwondo returning students also left strong impressions on the judges and their opponents. Greer Aylece, training since last year, won all her fights, earning herself a well-deserved gold medal.

Submitted by Ieuan Cox on Mon, 11/07/2016 - 12:18

Promotion picture for I, Daniel Blake

Ken Loach’s latest film, I, Daniel Blake, is a damning indictment of Tory Britain. Set in Newcastle, it follows the title character’s struggle to negotiate the bureaucracy of the benefits system after suffering a major heart attack. Daniel, played by Dave Johns, is declared fit to work by a Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) “healthcare professional” and ineligible for Employment and Support Allowance, despite the advice of his doctors. Loach skilfully contrasts the obstinate, uncaring culture of the Job Centre with the compassion of ordinary people to produce a heart-wrenching, anger-inducing call to arms.

Early in the film, Daniel befriends Katie, a single mother of two, after she is ‘sanctioned’ for arriving minutes late for her appointment at the Job Centre, despite having only just arrived in Newcastle. Both characters are determined to find work, with Katie considering taking an Open University course, but they are repeatedly treated by the system as scroungers and cheats. Though Daniel has years of experience as a carpenter, he is forced to jump through hoops such as a CV workshop and online job-searches in order to claim Job Seeker’s Allowance. His lack of computer literacy is overlooked entirely by the Job

Submitted by JT Tema on Fri, 10/14/2016 - 12:20
Action shot WFC vs Bend It Like Peckham
Photo Credit: Will Beach, GSU Sports Assistant

Despite the bitterly cold weather, a big crowd turned out to watch Goldsmiths WFC take on Bend It Like Peckham in a pre-season 9-a-side friendly. The Goldsmiths Ladies were using this as an opportunity to give some of their new recruits some game time against a confident opponent.

Goldsmiths began the game with some wonderful passing plays down the pitch from side to side, however, they were failing to translate these moves into shots when they reached the final third of the pitch.

The first of Peckham’s goals came from their captain Roanna Fawcett who capitalised on a poor clearance by Goldsmiths from a corner. She followed this with a powerful free kick into the bottom left hand corner only moments later.

A break through that Goldsmiths tried to clear took a lucky deflection into the path of Peckham’s other centre forward for a one on one with the Goldsmiths keeper, which she capitalised on putting Peckham 3-0 up early on.

As the first half progressed, each team were starting to make more and more probing runs with Goldsmiths appearing to wake up a bit and spending a considerable amount of time in

 

A photograph of The Cure taken by me

This past weekend I went to see The Cure at the Wembley Arena. I met a new friend, gained a new accessory and lost a new t-shirt. Overall to say it was an incredible experience is a vast understatement. I think I am still caught in a Robert Smith induced daze...The concert was a whopping three hours long. Not to mention I spent an additional five hours waiting in line outside in the blistering cold (worth it.) The standing ticket was general admission so I figured I should queue early, however I was not prepared for the cold and the eventually aching of my frozen toes. No real complaints though, I was second row from the barricade to see my favorite band of all time. The Cure is a gothic/pop/rock band that formed in Crawley in the late seventies. Some of their most popular songs are “Boys Don’t Cry” and “Friday I’m In Love.” At the concert their setlist spanned over the decades of hits in their career, playing tracks from their earliest albums to their latest. My favorite song to hear live was “Lullaby”, the doomy and catchy tune was surreal to hear in person. Robert Smith (the

The Taekwondo Tram

The Goldsmiths Taekwondo team’s exceptional performance at past competitions precedes them, and they continue to provide great results as they have yet another incredibly successful weekend away at the Imperial Open this past Sunday. The team took nine fighters to the competition hosted by the University of East London, and brought home 7 medals; 2 gold, 2 silver and 3 bronze.

Abigail Bailey and Taha Nasir, two of Goldsmiths Taekwondo’s newest members, put on an impressive performance for the short time they had been training. Unfortunately, Abigail lost her fight receiving no medal, but this has not dampened her spirits as she looks forward to going back to training, to get ready for the next competition. Although Taha also lost his fight, he brought home a well-deserved bronze medal. Returning fighter Njabulo Mkhize had a great fight, however got tired out after the first half allowing the opponent to land several points unfortunately causing NJ to lose the fight.

The most notable fighter of the day was Teneil, who also made his debut this weekend. He won his first two fights with a massive advantage, giving away close to no points to the opponent. He walked in to the final

 

GoldBloc waits outside the SU

 

 

On Saturday the 19th of November, I joined students and lecturers to march as part of ‘GoldBloc’ at the National Demonstration for Education, a protest organized by both the National Union of Students and The University and the Colleges Union. The demonstration was held largely in response to the proposal of the Higher Education and Research Bill, a controversial piece of legislation devised by the Minister for Universities and Science Jo Johnson who is turning out to be as despised by students as his brother, Boris. Most prominently, the Higher Education and Research Bill, commonly referred to as the HE Bill, proposes the creation of the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) which allows universities to establish the quality of their institutions and raise their fees accordingly. 

Goldsmiths have already voted to raise tuition fees to £9,250 per year for students starting in 2017 if the bill is fully approved. The threat of even higher tuition fees for upcoming students and the government’s increasing attempts to marketize and privatize the education system sparked the higher than usual turnout at the march, which was the biggest student demonstration since 2010 when the government tripled fees to £9,000.

We gathered at

Submitted by Clara Hill on Thu, 11/17/2016 - 08:55

That’s it, the world is officially ending. The people of America have just elected a fascist to be the leader of the free world. Donald Trump will be the 45th President of the United States of America. However, unless you’ve been living under a rock since the 8th of November, you probably already know that. It’s pretty earth shattering inescapable news. 

 

Since his election, there have been calls to empathise with his voters. Apparently, they are confused and left behind by the previous generation of politicians. Erm, how about nah? I mean, I understand hatred doesn’t solve hatred, but I do blame the voters, who clearly were aware of how sexist, racist and foolish Donald Trump was. Unlike our current elected officials, he’s a little less demure his in problematic behaviour. 

 

However, I don’t believe generalising all Americans as evil Trump voters is justified. As you may know, Hillary won the popular vote. More Americans voted for her than Trump. But, because of the well established electoral college system, a system I understand why is in place and can’t really be toppled; states rights and all that. Personally, as a independence backing Scot, I really can empathise with

The evening of the 10th November saw The Stretch host an anti-apathy panel to discuss some of the most worrying aspects of our contemporary political and social climate. Primarily, the divide between those who have been invigorated to action by the wrongs that they are perceiving in contemporary society and those who have fallen into the malaise of disenchantment with the political system. The panel consisted of representatives from Rent Strike, Black Lives Matter UK, Anti Raids Network and Movement for Justice by Any Means Necessary. The discussion began with an introduction by the curator of the panel Liv Wynter, addressing the apathy that she has witnessed at Goldsmiths, stating that this lack of concern is grounded in the image-consciousness and advantage of privilege among many students who are willing to pay only lip service to finding a solution to today’s issues rather than taking action to resolve them. “These are the people who will tell you for 45 minutes how to change the world but have no interest implementing that and putting it into practice. These are people who will remain apathetic until directly affected,” stated Wynter.

The floor was then handed over to Liam Renouf who was representing

Submitted by Clara Hill on Wed, 11/16/2016 - 22:55

 

Article 50 hasn’t even been triggered, but the aftermath of the Brexit referendum has been everywhere in politics. From a shift in Prime Minister to reports of increased racist abuse, its all kicking off. The latest Brexit related stress has the headlines. Turns out, Theresa May’s map to leaving the EU is a bit totalitarian, according to The High Court. They ruled a case presented by Gina Miller, a business woman and philanthropist, who argued that there needed a parliamentary vote on the plan. 

It makes sense to me, a lowly third year Politics student, to present it to Parliament to be debated and voted on. My limited knowledge about our tangled constitution tells me The Houses of Parliament are sovereign, not referendums. This seemed to be news to a lot of people. However, due to anecdotal evidence of mine, this is not surprising. Political education is an abysmal, in this country. 

Don't get me wrong, I understand completely why that would be confusing. I only know that all sovereignty in this country stems from Parliament because of my A-Level and degree studies of Politics. This isn’t a rant about the stupidity of the people. but those who really