When the Clyde Ran Red by Maggie Craig
When the Clyde Ran Red by Maggie Craig was the most recent book set for our local book group. It is a social and political history of the town of Clydebank, the city of Glasgow and their surrounding areas.
The author covers a wide expanse of Clydeside’s social history from the end of the nineteenth century through to the present day. When the Clyde Ran Red discusses the rise of the labour and communist movements in the west of Scotland which led to the nickname Red Clydeside.
The book compares the enormous wealth of the industrial classes with the poverty that dogged the lives of the ordinary working men and women, and the attitudes that were prevalent at that time. It describes the rising militism of the workers struggling against an unfair system, and the various protests and strikes as they strove to better themselves.
When the Clyde Ran Red does not focus exclusively on men. The women had their part to play. The waitresses in Miss Cranston’s tearooms, the suffragettes, and the wives and mothers, many of the latter taking a leading role in the rent strikes during the early part of the century. This book is rather heavy reading for a book group: nevertheless it is a mine of information about conditions at the time, and whether you read it as a historical source, or just for pleasure, it cannot fail to retain your interest.
Maggie Craig writes family sagas set in her native Glasgow & Clydebank, historical novels set in Glasgow and Edinburgh and historical non-fiction. As the author of the ground-breaking and acclaimed Damn’ Rebel Bitches: The Women of the ’45, she is the acknowledged expert on the women who supported – and some who opposed – Bonnie Prince Charlie and the Jacobites of 1745.
All Maggie’s books have been highly praised for their convincing and engaging characters and vivid sense of place.
She has two grown-up children and lives now in the north of Scotland with her Welsh husband.
If you would like to read more about Maggie and her books, please visit her website at http://www.maggiecraig.co.uk or follow her on Twitter @CraigMaggie.