- The Cartoon Book Of Tree Protesting
by Kate Evans. Pub. Orange Dog 1998. £9.50
Squall 16, Summer 1998, pg. 46.
This is an eco-activist book with extra bite. It traces the story of protests up and down the country over the last five years in cartoons, words and photographs.
There are chapters on Solsbury Hill, the M11, Stanworth Valley, Newbury and more.
The book’s strength is that author and cartoonist Kate Evans spent time living at most of these protests. The quality and accurate detail of her cartoons give her the credentials of a war artist. She has documented victories and defeats
with equal wit, charm and insight. She has drawn treehouses, walkways, lock-ons, and a variety of knots, dogs, cops and characters. Her work is sometimes humorous, sometimes heartbreaking, always politically astute.
The cartoons are accompanied by superb photographs by Andrew Testa (who clearly spent a fair amount of time up a tree himself) and a range of interviews with protestors the like you will not read anywhere else.
Evans interviewed over 50 people and her familiarity with the conditions they survived, and the nature of their protests, result in exchanges which cut through the usual media dross right to the heart of it. They are personal, frank, unselfconscious and fascinating accounts of every stage of a protest, from a tree-protestor over-coming the fear of climbing a tree, to how women piss in a harness up a tree, to terrifying accounts of struggles with security guards and bailiffs.
If you’ve never visited a protest site this self-published book will take you straight to the top of a tree someone’s trying to cut down; if you have, this is your story, or the story of some of your mates. Buy it, don’t blag it!
Copies will be distributed to bookshops price £9.50 but you can order the book direct for £10 including p&p from Orange Dog Productions, 7 The Green, Biddestone, Nr Chippenham, Wiltshire SN14 7DG.
For a menu of many other Squall articles about the Anti-Roads Movement, including protest camps, Reclaim The Streets and more click here