We're working hard to complete the beta version of the Amok Dispatch online. Previously published across five editions; the Dispatch became internationally recognized as a vitally important guide to bizarre and provocative information in the pre-internet era.Vanity Fair proclaimed it to be “the benchmark sourcebook on deviant literature” while the San Francisco Chronicle asserted that "a side effect of reading the Amok Dispatch is that it could make you reconsider the very nature of imagination, freedom and possibility."
The fifth edition of the dispatch opened up its ranks to a wide-ranging group of “oddball bibliophiles” (as director John Waters termed them) to contribute reviews and became a true sourcebook rather than a mail order book catalog. Each of the Amok Fifth Dispatch contributors brought his or her own distinctive perspective and voice to the job of reviewing these intriguing and often obscure works.
This new online version takes the thousands of book reviews, excerpts and photos from the Amok Fifth Dispatch as the basis for an ever-expanding portal for challenging and subversive books and information.
In late 2014, we completed Between the Sheets in which we traced the final weeks of George Boole's life over a series of walks through Cork and its environs. On the 150th anniversary weekend, the walks followed his final journey aiming to correct certain misapprehensions that have become common knowledge.
Research conducted in order to produce Between the Sheets will be published in 2015 and additional dates are being arranged for the walks to reoccur, albeit with a slight change in focus, in 2015 – the bicentenary of George Boole's birth.
You'd be forgiven if you've not heard of Boole or don't know much about him: in the mid-nineteenth century, Boole invented a Calculus of Logic which provided pathways for mathematicians and engineers to develop abstractions leading to the design of the first computer.
However, Between the Sheets leaves the complexities of Boole's work to the mathematicians and focuses on the life of his family and friends to uncover the events leading to his death.
The walks took place between the 6th-8th December 2014, the sesquicentenary of Boole's death, in Cork, Ireland.
In the Wild
January 2015 saw the 100th anniversary of the first war in the air as German Zeppelins attacked the Norfolk coast at Great Yarmouth and King's Lynn.
In May 1915, London received its first visit from the Zeppelins. In London this month, Ian Castle is giving two free illustrated talks – The Germans Are Here!': 31 May 1915 - London's First Zeppelin Raid at the National Archives on the 26th and the National Army Museum on the 28th.
The latter is followed by a Zeppelin walk by Ian (organised by the London Blue Badge Guide group).