The Front


RACHEL JURY, slam poet extraordinaire, gets ready to play ‘Lips Unleashed' at Glasgay! and picks her five favourite living poets.

1 Linton Kwesi Johnson M: "rilli’l‘fl ’r‘ ’llllr [/r‘:l', ll‘.’ .'.' if”, [Jr'sw’rrnrtbl/ '1? "‘1.- lrlrir} i‘l".’.“.." ‘7/[,‘:Y’~’:'i‘,‘r ()" ‘.lit’}‘: l“: ’i’,“'.l I'

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2 John Cooper Clarke I first saw him in a back street London pub; I was 16. His poems are brutally sharp and uncompromising.

3 Rosie Lugosi lht: hasriut:ri .i/orrryn, tho urrrloarl rarlrrgal lesbian separatist. 'lllill (ll‘l/llit).(1()<;lsflll(ilsillti toil inrrrrrrr: Jt’illltlllt: (itlttétll lllUlll (irxitirms. She‘s also very sexy !'l hr:r black lozithor all Hi ow,- <:at suit.

4 Chloe Poems The gay sooalist transvestite poet with the best gingham frock in town. His poems are a mixture of Shirley Temple spiced up with pornography.

5 Francesca Beard lit/rites Witty. aw“. poerrrs (l(?l|\.’(?l(?(i rrr a curious. hut delightfully alool rrrarrrror. ll(:t ahrlrt‘~,' to use the (woo/(lay <,<>rrir,rrit:<l ‘.'./Zill up front horiosty really oporwl up the pr ssrh:lrtros of poetry for me.


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he0pinion ' THE



The ardsell


an opportunity to (Explore tilt? meaningu :- r




It looks fluffy and gentle, but don’t be fooled. The Alpha Course is out to get you with studied marketing and an aggressive Christian agenda. Words: Ruth Hedges

\cr since I was inyited to dinner by a friend.

orin to lind my sell" immersed in a celebration

ol ('hristianity and the Alpha course. l‘y'e been suspicions. I was lured in with the simple ol'l'er ol‘ l'ood and l'r'iendship. and her deceptiye tactics r'ankled and alarmed. So when I see the eyangelical ('hristian mission has blit/ed lidinburgh and (ilasgow with a massiye adyertising campaign. alarm bells start clanging not just because of religion as commodity being sold as a lil'estyle. but the aggressiye marketing and sources oi money that fund this campaign.

Alpha is the most .stlccessltll recruitment agency the church has had in years. it is a l5—session course ol'l‘ering participants the opportunity to ‘explore the meaning ol' lil'e'. lts non—threatening literature indicates that the course is merely a gentle contemplation ol‘ faith.

The moyement was started in Wt): in London‘s ls’niglitsbridge. one of the most al’lluent diocese in the country. The lirst conyersions were people with a spiritual \‘oid whose high earning liyes lcl‘t their souls barren. 'l'he welcoming arms of Alpha proyidcd spiritual riches while reassuring their lil'estyle choices and taking their linancial gills. helping in turn to fund the spread oi Alpha. ()ne critical \‘icar described it as ‘priyatised religion'. Leaders ol‘ the Alpha moyement see no contradiction between the indiy'idualistic. consumer-led outlook and the teachings ol‘ the Bible.

And it’s not .lllsl money that Alpha has taken from its corporate champions. lts marketing techniques can be gleaned l‘rorn its training manual. ‘The A-/. ol

Bongo Launch Mora". House. Edinburgh

Malcolm Hamilton

Running Alpha‘. ('oinciding with the latest inllu\ ol~ new students in cities. Alpha's prime carnpargn is now launched annually in late September to greet ‘the l'uture leaders ol tomorrow '. l.ike banks. it knows that ii. you get 'em as students. you're likely to haye the l'uture miners and shakers' custom tor me. So. sell packaged. branded religion to people who may be away l‘rom home tor the lirst time and l‘celing a little \ulner‘able. and you‘re onto a winner. ’l’he manual. which you can download iron] the alpha website w w w.alphacourse. org/students. makes laseinating reading.

The methods are spelt out with all the brce/y language ol' a management handbook. But behind the cheery smiles and exclamation marks lie tougher rhetoric and a more pointed agenda. In the first meetings leaders are encouraged to ‘moderate your normally l‘er'yent worship’. Later on the manual says: ‘Iz'i'u/rge/rwr u‘r‘r/rour prayer n like u bum/r it'll/mu! u r/elmrulor and prayer wit/mu! ei'rurge/rsm is like u r/erorrurur arr/rout (I lmnr/r'. 'l’he benign l'aeadc conceals a determined cyangelical mission to convert.

'l'hc jokes and smiles are nail. then. but they’re also consciously misleading which. as tar as i can remember. isn't part ol' ('hristian morality. Honesty and truth are laudable yalues propounded by the faith so why does Alpha go to so much eli‘ort to disguise its real purpose'.’ it is the seemingly gentle. w'hilc actually aggressiyc. techniques that sends little shiyers ol' tear and suspicion through my heathen body. Amen.


Moonie Amy Logan