Book launches- Struggle or Starve: Working-Class Unity in Belfast’s 1932 Outdoor Relief Riots

1st Sep 2017

Join author and activist Seán Mitchell as he launches his latest book, Struggle or Starve: Working-Class Unity in Belfast’s 1932 Outdoor Relief Riots. (https://www.haymarketbooks.org/books/1049-struggle-or-starve)

In October 1932, the streets of Belfast were gripped by vicious and widespread rioting that lasted the best part of a week. Thousands of unarmed demonstrators fought extended pitched battles against heavily-armed police. Unemployed workers and, indeed, whole working-class communities, dug trenches and built barricades to hold off the police assault. The event became known as the Outdoor Relief Riot – one of very few instances in which class sympathy managed to trump sectarian loyalties in a city famous for its divisions. 

Struggle or Starve is the first book-length study of these events. Based on archive research and first-hand accounts, it tells a tale that has been forgotten and sidelined by both Irish Nationalist and Unionist historiography, but which provides essential lessons if unified working-class politics are to displace sectarianism today. 


Manchester: Saturday, 30 September, 1pm-4pm. Working Class Movement Library. Facebook event: https://www.facebook.com/events/1625506180823781/


Liverpool: Sunday, 1 October, 7pm. Liverpool Irish Centre. Facebook event https://www.facebook.com/events/1997484933798254/


Dates in Edinburgh and London to be announced.