‘Flowers of evil’
Ecosystem health and the punk poetry of John Cooper Clarke
in Fight back
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The 'punk poetry' of John Cooper Clarke displays a keen awareness of its environment. This chapter argues that punk developed aesthetic forms ideally placed to articulate environmental injustice, forms epitomised and extended by Cooper Clarke. Roy Bullock's collation of newspaper stories from the Salford City Reporter documents the city in the years from Cooper Clarke's birth to the onset of punk and the beginnings of his performing career. With his surrealism churning up the 'hidden ground' of urban environmental injustice, Cooper Clarke's work brought social observation back down to earth. The central insight of environmental injustice is that while the degradation of the physical landscape runs parallel to that of the built environment, more fundamentally, material, metabolic processes connect human with nonhuman. In any conception of environmental injustice, key signifiers therefore will be the physical environment, the built environment and, especially, human health.

Fight back

Punk, politics and resistance

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