Nelson Mandela: A life in pictures
Nelson Mandela and his wife Winnie in this undated file picture.
As we get closer to May 1, the May Day General Strike, called by Occupy groups and allies around the country, is drawing more and more attention and speculation. Although an immense amount of work is going into march planning, convergences, food provision, school walkouts and ways to encourage people out of work and into the streets, I have no way (or desire) to predict the outcomes of these efforts on May 1 and the days and weeks that follow. As I’ve noted here before, this general strike will look very different from past ones in American history, as it enlists a largely un-unionized workforce, the under- and unemployed — and students burdened by unpayable debts.
To get a sense of the diverse ideas that a general strike could represent, we need only look at the types of propaganda emerging to promote May Day. The strike posters — wheat-pasted on billboards, brick walls and subway stations and shared through Twitter, Facebook and various websites — suggest a vast array of strike activities. I’ve put together a slide show of May Day posters with the help of Jesse Goldstein, a New York artist and academic and part of the Occuprint collective (which collects, prints and distributes posters for Occupy by raising funds on Kickstarter). From illustrations evoking kite-flying holidays, to images of dinosaurs riding sharks urging high school students to join a walkout, these posters give some idea of the muftifaceted nature of Occupy’s plan.
Natasha Lennard is an assistant news editor at Salon, covering non-electoral politics, general news and rabble-rousing. Follow her on Twitter @natashalennard, email email@example.com. More Natasha Lennard.
In this July 4, 1993 photo, President Bill Clinton and Nelson Mandela listen during Fourth of July ceremonies in Philadelphia during which Clinton presented the Philadelphia Liberty Medal to the African National Congress president and South African President F.W. de Klerk. (AP Photo/Greg Gibson)
African National Congress (ANC) leader Nelson Mandela greeted residents of Mmabatho in March 1994, during a visit after the nominal homeland came under South African control following the ousting of the former President Lucas Mangope. (Reuters/Howard Burditt)
South African rugby captain Francois Pienaar, right, received the Rugby World Cup trophy from President Nelson Mandela also wearing a South African rugby shirt, after South Africa defeated New Zealand in the Rugby World Cup , in 1995. (AP Photo / Ross Setford)