CANCELLED Jonathan Hogg: “Keep Orkney Active Not Radioactive’: Uranium activism, global supply politics, and nuclear colonialism, 1976-1979’

Start time: 15:30 / End time: 17:00 / Date: 29 Apr 2020 / Venue: Lecture Theatre 2 Rendall Building

Open to: Students within this Faculty / Staff within this Faculty / Any UOL students / Any UOL staff / Any potential postgraduate students / Any potential international students / General Public

Type: Seminar


Contact: For more information contact Dr Roland Clark at

About the event

The University is closely monitoring national and international developments in relation to COVID-19 and taking actions as appropriate. As a result, we have taken the decision to cancel or postpone all University led public events until the end of April 2020. Thereafter, events will remain under review.

The health and wellbeing of our students, staff and visitors is our highest priority and while we realise that the cancellation of events will cause some inconvenience and disappointment, this temporary measure is aimed at ensuring that our response to the current situation remains responsible and informed by the latest public health advice and expertise.

We regret that the University cannot be held liable for any loss or damage, including but not limited to travel and accommodation costs, arising from this event cancellation.


This presentation explores the Orkney ‘No Uranium’ campaign movement that developed in the 1970s. It was was created in direct response to efforts to drill test bore holes on mainland Orkney in 1976, following the broad impact of the 1973 Oil Crisis. After embedding the perspectives of the Orkney activist movement within the politics of British uranium supply, the presentation offers another layer of interpretation that is global in scope. Building on the work of Gabrielle Hecht, I argue that because UK-based uranium mining proved to be non-essential (largely because the UK had secret contracts with uranium mines in South African occupied Namibia into the 1980s), the Orkney case study indirectly illuminates another way that Britain’s ‘nuclearity’ was inherently, and powerfully, colonial in the Cold War era. The interpretation presented here is largely based on research conducted at Orkney Library and Archives, The National Archives (Kew), and National Records of Scotland (Edinburgh).

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