How do cartoons and visual satire operate?
This lecture will look at when humans first created art and at the dawn of satire.
Examining the work of Swift, Hogarth, Gillray, David Low and Ronald Searle, this lecture by celebrated cartoonist Martin Rowson will also examine the role cartoons play in giving offence. Covering the Danish Cartoons scandal and the Charlie Hebdo massacre, this talk will also look at Martin Rowson's own cartoon output over the past 40 years.
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This lecture was recorded by Martin Rowson on 25th January 2024 at Barnard's Inn Hall, London
The transcript and downloadable versions of the lecture are available from the Gresham College website:
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This talk will be filled with very disturbing and unpleasant imagery of very disturbing and unpleasant things. And it will also contain a lot of extraordinarily strong foul language because that is the language we have developed in the way we have developed language to express our horror at the disgusting and foul things that I have to deal with on a daily basis. If you are likely to find all of that offensive and you don't want to be offended, which is something we'll be getting onto later, um, I strongly recommend you either turn off or, or you leave. But you can't ask your money back because no money has so far changed hands. And as far as I know, it never will. But another way in which I have purposefully and deliberately chosen to lower the tone is I have provided no transcript of this talk because it doesn't exist. Uh, it's not just because I'm too lazy to write it down. It's because I'm actually too busy. And also because I am a visual satirist and I am a great believer in us as a species recognizing exactly what we are good at. The Gresham College lecture that you're listening to right now is giving you knowledge and insight from one of the world's leading academic experts, making it takes a lot of time. But because we want to encourage a love of learning, we think it's well worth it. We never make you pay for lectures, although donations are needed. All we ask in return is this. Send a link to this lecture to someone you think would benefit. And if you haven't already, click the follow or subscribe button from wherever you are listening right now. Now, let's get back to the lecture, Because we have been drawing, making marks more or less for as long as we have been speaking. It's one of the things we do. We are extraordinary amongst animals as well as being terrible amongst animals. And we are probably unique in the fact that we observe the world around us continuously in constantly pouring through our organs of perception. We have no way of controlling this and this. We stop up our ears and we then hear the sounds in our heads, and we control the world by re narrativizing it. That's what we do. We recreate it in safe mode, if you like. We tell stories, we do pictures. One of the things we didn't do until very, very recently was write them down, because writing was only invented following the creation of the first states about five and a half thousand years ago. Uh, and the purpose of writing is as a subset of accountancy. The point of writing is to make a list of the harvest and who has paid their taxes on the harvest and who has not paid their taxes on the harvest, and must therefore be executed by the tyrant in charge. So writing is about theft and murder, whereas drawing is about being human. It's what we do. We are, as I said, an extraordinary, varied, amazing and terrifying species of animals. And, uh, you know, we are very good at certain things. We're good at jumping. We're good at drawing. We're good at jokes. We are really good at jokes. We're good at genocide. Um, but as I said, we've been drawing for a very, very long time. So this is a drawing from the Chauvet Cave System in southern France. It was the subject of the film, uh, cave of Forgotten Dreams by Vanna Hertzog. Um, and this was drawn almost certainly by women because they left their hand prints close by, and the width of their spans of their hands suggest that they're drawn by women. Um, 35,000 years ago. 35, that's, that's 30,000 years before we organized ourselves in states and we started living under hierarchies, and we started having to bend to the will of priests and princes and politicians and prefects of police and other pricks. His job description begins with a p <laugh>. Um, but it's by no means the oldest known drawing. Currently the oldest known drawing is this, uh, which is, uh, um, a, it, it's a pig Deer isn't that nice? It's a pig deer on the wall of a cave in Indonesia. It's 45,000 years old. Uh, that's 40,000 years before we set, started living in society's run as hierarchies. Um, and that's by no means the oldest hominid drawing because this is a drawing by a Neanderthal done 113,000 years ago. And we can sort of tell there's something that looks a bit like some kind of vid or ox there, but what the hell any of the rest of it means. We will never know because we are not neandertals. Some of us have some neandertal blood and probably makes us nicer than we would be otherwise, but we just don't know what it means. Anyway, as I said, the point about all of this is that it's how we wrangle our way through reality and navigate our way through our lives without going insane with existentialist dread. Because we can control it by recreating it and re narrativizing it. And in that process, as that information pause through our organs of perception, it passes through that infinitely vast space inside our heads where we romp in our dreams when we go mad every night. And so we exaggerate things, and this again from the show case system, the woman who drew this 35,000 years ago got to the very heart of what Renar is about because she, in seeing one of these rhinoceros who then wandered around the plains of southern France 35,000 years ago, recognized the most important thing about a rhinoceros. It's in the name in the Greek nose horn. And so she drew this rhinoceros. But what she did, although she created a visual parable in the exaggeration, she drew an animal which could not actually ever really exist because the nose horn is so big, it would fall flat on its face. Nonetheless, it gets to that deep truth about the nature of ouris. It's the hall and its bloody nose, just like a parable. It gets to a deeper truth through exaggeration. And this next image, which I find is quite extraordinary, is a drawing 35,000 years ago, replicating movement, drawn in a cave in almost pitch darkness. We have no idea whether they were drawing these animals to identify them, to appreciate them or just for the sheer joy of it, or to control them. Who knows? Who knows? But as I said, as all that information ceaselessly pours through our organs of perception, it picks up on madness. All that mad teretic shit we have inside our heads, which is why we have skulls to keep it inside, except when they invented the internet <laugh> and we had a collective id we could pour all this into it picks up mad things and we started drawing things which have never existed except in our heads. And these are fear Andros. These are creatures drawn on a cave wall in Australia 10,000 years ago. They are human beings with animals heads. They have never existed except in the dreams and then the shared dreams of the artist. And a few thousand years later, that fact that we could make stuff up in our heads was so extraordinary to us that the ancient Egyptians actually deified ce the jackal headed God of the ancient Egyptians, and started a trend which actually then carried on for thousands of years in Western art. It was the standard practice in the Eastern Orthodox Church always to represent St. Christopher. You know, the guy who carried Christ across the Jordan on his shoulder with a dog's head. Because at some point somebody had misunderstood the fact that St. Christopher came from Canaan and wasn't a canine. It was genuinely true, genuinely true. And throughout medieval Europe, it was assumed where people were born in villages. They then died in, they never went anywhere except possibly on a crusade. And that was only a tiny proportion of them. The people who lived over the hill, over the hill were all assumed to have dog's heads. It's just what we assumed they were empiricism had yet to rear its ugly head in Western thought. And of course, a few thousand years later after that, we get Wal Disney with another doghead. God. Anyway, so that's, that's the art side of my craft. The next bit is the humor bit. And uh, this is a drawing by the great Ronald Soul, who I'm sure many of you will be familiar with, uh, without question, the greatest British cartoonist of the 20th century. And, uh, about three months before he died in 2011, I, uh, I used to correspond with him. I never met him. I used to correspond with him occasionally. Anyway, I received a package through the door and I thought I recognized that handwriting. And, uh, it was a box of pens he'd bought in Paris in 1962, which he'd found at the back of a cupboard. And he, with a little note in his familiar scroll saying, found these in the back of a cupboard. I've got enough to last me out. Um, hope you enjoy using 'em. Which believe me, for a British cartoonist to be sent pens by Ronald souls like receiving a high five from God <laugh>. Anyway, Sol had a quite extraordinary life, which I hope nobody in this room has lived, has led a life like his. Uh, he was born in Cambridge in 1920. Um, started doing drawings for Grantor Magazine when he was still at school when he was 16, um, under the editorship of Eric Hobbs, born the future Marxist historian. And, uh, then he, uh, went to the College of Technology in Cambridge and started doing cartoons of the Cambridge Evening News. Invented the St. Tris girls in about 19 38, 39, and and then joined the Army and was posted to Singapore and was taken prisoner when Singapore fell to the Japanese at the end of 1941, and was then a prisoner of the Japanese for the rest of the war, uh, experiencing at a very young age. Truly, truly horrific things. I mean, genuinely horrific things. But the point was, he instinctively understood what I said earlier on, that, hey, the way we wrangle reality, that he had to make a record. He had to recreate what he was seeing in order to control it and to make sense of it. And somehow or other, he managed to find some paper and pens and he would do drawings of genuine atrocities of the cruelties wrought out to him and his fellow prisoners on a daily basis. And he would've been executed on the spot had the Japanese guards discovered this. But what he did, he would hide the drawings underneath the mattresses of his fellow prisoners who were dying of typhoid or cholera, knowing that was the only place the Japanese guards would never search. And so they survived. And this is one of them showing Japanese, sorry, showing British and Australian, uh, prisoners of war being treated like beasts of burden in the construction of the Burma railway. And this is, this is a, this is a war crime. This is against the Geneva Convention. Um, and when he was repatriated in 1945, what sur did next is the really extraordinary thing. He took that trauma, which he had re narrativized on paper, and he played it for laughs. He reinvented the Saint Tris, but they were much, much darker than it was before. But he played it for laughs. So here is this image drawn in the Burmese jungle. And four years later, here is this image of the same thing of the Cent Tris girls pulling a garden roller saying Bloody sports Day <laugh>. And this is an image of a, this is a genuine, this is like Goya's images of war, the horrors of war. This is Japanese soldiers standing around a collection of the heads of Burmese peasants who have been beheaded for pilfering off the Burma railway. This is evidence of a war crime. This is truly horrific image. The young Ronald drew and hid and kept and was able to show the rest of the world after the war and after the war, he also drew this cent Tris cartoon. This is Bertha, our head girl.<laugh>, yes. Laugh, laugh. You have to laugh. That's the whole point. That again, is we redeem ourselves through recording it and transcribing it and recreating it. We also redeem ourselves through laughter. We don't laugh at nice things. We laugh at the bad shit. And shit is the operative word here. There is a noise, which I believe will make any child on this planet under the age of one laugh. And it is this noise. And that is the, they laugh at that noise.'cause that's the noise the shit makes as it pours out of our bodies on a daily basis. And if you think about it for a single second, that happening to all of us, if we're lucky on a daily or more than daily basis, should drive you insane with existentialist horror. Except we joke about it, the fact that from the age of three onwards, we almost all are aware of the fact that we personally will die, should fill us with existentialist horror and terror. And yet we laugh at it. We laugh in the face of death. We laugh at the shit. The fact that we have had David Cameron, Theresa May, Boris Johnson, Liz Truss, and Rishi soak in absolute control of our personal and political destinies, should drive us into realms of madness with existentialist terror, except we can laugh at them. And when you laugh, as George Orwell said, every joke is a tiny revolution. It evens up the balance because it releases the endorphins. My job is not to improve the behavior of the people I draw. My job is to actually license you to laugh at the bastards. Anyway, talking of war crimes. This is, um, this is Alistair Campbell, as I'm sure you're aware, was, uh, Tony Blair's, director of communications in the early years of the new labor governments of the 1990s and two thousands said to me, the second most powerful man in the country after Rupert Murdoch, obviously now from 2000 until 2005, I had a really nice gig. Um, you know, I, I like getting out in the wild occasion. I like drawing from the life as it were. Um, it, it's always quite nice to draw somebody because I know exactly what I'm doing and, and I show it to somebody. There is always the element of risk. There's a jeopardy involved. They might actually hit me. And some people actually have, several politicians have actually physically assaulted me after I've shown them drawings, of which is fun. You know, they were said, they were friends of mine, but I don't think they like the drawings. Um, and there's a, there was a fantastic restaurant in Soho not far from here, called the Gay Who Are, which was a Hungarian restaurant set up in the 1950s, uh, closed in 2019, 2018, sorry. And, um, in its heyday, in the sixties and seventies it was, and lingering into the eighties and a bit in the nineties, it was where the political and journalistic elite would go to gossip and conspire. It said that Har wasn't entire cabinet would go there for lunch. And, uh, Victor sassy, the manager would have to place them in such a way they couldn't overhear each other, conspiring against each other.<laugh>. And also it is rumored, but I believe it is true, that, uh, George Brown, when he was foreign secretary, started feeling the knee of the woman sitting next to him in the banquette and was thrown out of the restaurant, the only foreign secretary known to have been thrown out of a London restaurant, which is, well, so far as we know. Um, anyway, one night I was, I was process of leaving and I, and I said to the then manager, um, uh, John Bel, I said, uh, Hey John, how about I draw your celebrity patrons? Because this is a really interesting place. This is, you know, the history of this place is really important, and we should record them. We should record these peoples during the course of their lunchtimes. And, you know, I didn't wanna get paid for it. I just wanted to sit there as a, as an artistic process, and then we could hang them on the wall. And I used to get paid in, in Central European food. Um, so I'd spend the afternoon drinking bull's, blood and eating a lot of carbohydrate. And in the evening, I'd try and sober up with this chain male fist squeezing my heart, uh, as the roast goose was slowly digested. And we got all sorts in there. I got Michael Foot, got Michael Howard, Michael Hesseltine, lots of Michaels, Michael Portillo on some of these occasions. Amazing. The pen didn't leap outta my hand and drive itself through my eyeball. Um, the room was dark, it was about the length of this stage. And going out to about the front row. Um, I got, uh, David ett having lunch with a beautiful blonde American woman without realizing this is the woman with whom he was having an affair. So I missed a scoop there. Um, and there were 60 of them ended up there. They are now all in the National Portrait Gallery. I'm happy to say after a dispute about ownership with the former owners of the Gay Hua. But on the third 21st of May, 2002, I remember it was my daughter's birthday, we got Alistair Campbell. And in drawing Alistair Campbell, it was the first time I genuinely understood, having, by that point, been a professional cartoonist for 20 years, precisely the nature of my craft. It was because unlike all the other people like Drawn, unlike Roy Hattersley, unlike Jack Jones, unlike Rodney, unlike Keith Waterhouse, unlike Glenda Jackson, who got on with their lunch and chatted to their mates, as I sat over the other side of the restaurant from them, Campbell sat there glowing at me. It was a very hot day. But you could have kept, and it was very crowded that day in the restaurant, you could have kept a side of beef in there for about three months. The atmosphere was so chilly. And at one point he shouted across the restaurant, you just won't be able to stop yourself from making me look a really bad person, will you? To which I replied, Alistair, I draw what I see. And that's what I saw <laugh>. And I then, as was my custom, and I, I would do this without practicing beforehand, without, um, you know, making sketches. I would just draw exactly what I saw. Uh, and it would take me about 40 minutes. And I would always take it up to my, uh, victim sitter, whatever you choose to call them, and to get them to sign as a true record of them during the course of their lunchtime. And I gave it to Campbell who said, and I quote, exactly, this is a good picture of Jeremy Paxman. Where the fuck is the one of me <laugh>? And this was a really amazing revelation.'cause I suddenly realized the nature of my craft. I was engaged not just in drawing somebody, but actually in sympathetic magic. This was deep, dark, voodoo damage at a distance with a sharp object, in this case, a pen. But nonetheless, he understood that I was taking the way he presents himself through no, with no power over it himself, almost entirely taking his face and recreating it, re narrativizing it, but also controlling it by changing it through a kind of like anthropy through actually changing it and creating him anew and therefore taking control of him and stealing his, for want of a better word, in his case soul. And he knew it.'cause if nothing else, Alistair Campbell, who I actually know quite well, and I quite like, to be honest, he's a control freak. He knew exactly what I was doing and he hated it. And when he said, where the fuck's the one of me, he was saying, your bad magic has not worked. I have regained my soul. And then stuffed it back wherever he keeps his soul. So those are the ingredients. It's the art, it's the ization, it's the control. It's the humor. It's making us laugh through exaggeration through ridiculous scenarios you create once you've got the caricature. And here he is spinning Tony Blair here he is, saying, if I sex you up in 45 minutes, will you come? And so on. And here he is in that wonderful story that broke in two th again in 2002 when the Queen mother died laden with age and honor. And a story broke that Alistair Campbell was putting pressure on black rod, the public official who was, uh, been given the task of organizing the Queen Mother's state funeral to give Tony a bigger role in the funeral because he played such a blinder at Diana's funeral. We dunno what the role would've been carrying the spare wheel to the gun carriage, possibly snuggling up the beside her in the casket. Anyway, the story broke, and I remember that wonderful description by John Biffin of, uh, Bernardine and Margaret Thatcher's press secretary, who was described as the sewer, not the sewage, because he was briefing the lobby with damaging stories about Thatcher's cabinet colleagues. But the sewage, the shit came directly from Thatcher. And I suddenly thought, yes, that's it. The, you know, the sewers. Sewers finally got blocked. And there is Alistair Campbell, but it's recognizably Alistair Campbell through the magic of caricature that is recognizably him. And there he is, he's blocked up. And the man who broke the story is my friend Peter Oborne, who was then political editor of The Spectator. And there he is down there as a turd. And the man who tried to kill the story was the then chairman of the Labor Party, Charles Clark. And he's down there as a tampon. Now, this is frankly disgusting filth. And I've shown this image in talks I've given in India across Europe, in Amer in America. They go, <laugh>, how the hell you get away with that? I say, well, we get away with that 'cause we have no First Amendment guarantee of freedom of speech in this country. That's why we get away with it. And the real reason we get away with it is because we've been doing this for centuries. This was described on the Today Program on Radio four as frankly Sulfurous. I said, yeah, that will do, frankly Sulfurous, that will do, that's fine. TripAdvisor comment. Yep. Um, and it's thanks to a beautiful moment in world history, which we've all forgotten about, if we ever knew, uh, which happened in 1695 after the glorious revolution of 1688, when they were meant to renew the Royal Licensing Act in parliament. Now, the Royal Licensing Act basically was press censorship. And, uh, when this college was founded, if somebody like me had done some drawings of the founder of this college, I would've been hanged, drawn and courted, by which I mean, I would've been strung up by the neck, but lowered while I was still alive. I'd then have my arms and legs chopped off. I'd then be castrated. Uh, I would then have my guts wound out while I was still alive, and then I'd be beheaded, uh, because he wouldn't have liked the drawing.'cause that was the punishment. The milder punishment was having your ears sheared off by the public hangman. John Print, the Puritan Pamphleteer during the Civil War, was sentenced to have his ears sheared off. And, uh, a forgetful judge sentenced him to have them sheared off again, much of the confusion of the public execution of it. But in 1695, because this was such a draconian law, it had to be renewed every two years, a bit like the Prevention of Terrorism Act. And somebody deliberately or otherwise forgot to put it on the parliamentary timetable to be renewed. So it lapsed. And suddenly in 1695, there was this eruption of a free press. I mean, it wasn't that free, that the state still had many powers at its disposal, but the actual legislation wasn't there. They spent 20 years trying to get it back on the statute book. But they realized people rather liked all this stuff. And they brought in the stamp act instead to try and tax journalism rather than just terrorize it into compliance. But it meant that not only was there eruption of Grub Streep, but there was also like Pandora's box, this sudden eruption of satire that suddenly all these people were taking at last the chance without the protection of a powerful patron to laugh at the power, which, as I said, is the thing we do to stop us going insane with existentialist dread. And so, throughout the age of reasons throughout the enlightenments, throughout the 18th century, there is this open sewer of satire running from Pope and Swift up to Gilroy. And this magnificent image, um, which was produced by an anonymous printmaker. Uh, anonymity was still quite a good idea for satis even, you know, even though they dropped the act, um, in 1720 of the Prime Minister Robert Warpole. Now Prime Minister's, one was interesting constructions. Um, the phrase was first invented as an insult, like the words Tory and Christian, and it was invented to describe what Warpole was up to. He's also known as old corruption, because the king who spoke no English and was in Hannover anyway, had basically devolved all power onto Warpole, who was gathering all the offices of state to himself. So he was the prime minister as he mook them dry. He was a crook. It was a heist. The British state is, the British constitution is based on the notion of a heist. The whole fact we have prime ministers is so they can rob us blind. Well, they try and disguise that, but you know, that's essentially what it's about. And here you have somebody who has to kiss his ass to get up the corridors of power. And soon the streets of London were a wash with images like this. And they brought in theater, uh, censorship under the Lord Chamberlain to prevent something like the Beggar's Opera being written again, which was just laughing at Warpole all the time, laughing at him all the time. They couldn't bear the laughter. But, you know, after a while, they had to, they had to stomach it. And very soon you have this history, this tradition of visual satire being exemplified by the great William Hogarth. Uh, the grandfather of the grandfather of the political cartoon who here early on in his career, um, is actually Ping Swift's Gulliver's Travels 1727, absolutely phenomenally successful book read, as they said, everywhere from the cabinet room to the nursery, to the point where a bishop wrote to another bishop, said, I've just read God's travels. I don't believe a word of it, <laugh>. And uh, this actually is one of the very few obscene scatological images, which doesn't appear in guavas travels. Guavas used as a dildo at one point in guavas travels, but here he is, been given an enema by the Lilliputians, uh, because Hogarth is just trying to make some money by, by ping something off. Um, and Swift, uh, to his credit, didn't mind because, um, 10 years later, he just broke the fourth wall in, uh, a perm. He was writing about the perty of the Irish parliament in cutting church tithes. And he was describing all these appalling people in the Irish parliament. And he suddenly, I said, breaks the fourth wall and directly addresses Hogarth and said, how I want the humorous Hogarth, thou, I hear a pleasant rogar were, but you and I acquainted, every monster should be painted. You should try your graving tools on this odious group of fools. Draw the beast as I describe them, form their features while I jive them. Draw them like far, I assure you, you will need no caricature. Draw them so that we may trace all the soul in every face. I mean, it's just such a beautiful love poem to my profession. And sadly, Hogarth and Swift never collaborated as a kind of Georgian version of Hunter s Thompson and Ralph Steadman. But if they had, you know, they would've drawn the soul in every face. Um, and, um, Hogarth wasn't specifically a political cartoonist, he was more of a social cartoonist. But he produced, I think, one of the most important images of the 18th century, which is this, which is gin lame, which actually boils it down to what my craft is truly about. Because this image which was created or printed rather on the 15th of February, 1751, my minus 208th birthday, uh, was part of a campaign by Hogarth and Henry Fielding the novelist, but also a magistrate in Covent Garden, against the pernicious influence of gin, which was seemed to be responsible for the collapse of society, which appeared to be happening around everybody. In fact, the collapse of society was due to an economic downturn, a huge number of unemployed soldiers who had been thrown onto the scrap people after the suppression of the Jacobite rebellions four years, four or five years earlier. Um, it was said in London, you could be held up by a highway man in Piccadilly at noon. And rather than looking at the nature of London, which was at the time the greatest city the world had ever seen, with no flush toilets, where every morning the night soil man would come round and collect the contents of the cess pits and the, and the, uh, what do you call those things? You put under your bed, um, chamber, chamber pops thank you and trundle out to the suburbs and dump them in enormous piles of shit in Islington. It's an easy laugh. Come on. You know, um, what were called the dust heaps in Dom and sun, which we then use to make bricks. And in fact, when Moscow burnt down was burnt out by the Muscovites in 1812, they rebuilt it with bricks from London, made out of a shit of Londoners. I don't think Putin knows that, but he does. Now, if he's watching this <laugh>, Londoners would sleep 15 to a cellar. They'd wear clothes until they rotted off their backs. Gin was the way they made life just about bearable, but it was considered to be a pernicious evil. And so Hogarth produced this image at the same time as he produced the stages of cruelty, a series of four images of how people are cruel because they drink and they, uh, do terrible things. This is particularly interesting because usually Hogarth, who was a very astute businessman, would produce a a, an oil painting. He'd then make an engraving of it. He would sell the engravings of prints, make prints. He'd usually try to get paid three times for one image. This exists only as a print. The original of this is a copper plate, which may possibly ended up as being used as shrapnel in the first World War. Certainly what happened to an awful lot of copper prints from the 18th century, um, it is therefore journalism. It exists solely to be reproduced, which is more or less the definition of journalism. It was there to be printed on cheap paper to be hung up in the workshops of the City of London as a lesson to young apprentices to avoid the evil drink gin. There's a companion piece to this, which is called Beer Street, which is unbelievably boring and goody goody because this is an extraordinarily powerful image. It's extraordinarily powerful because it's funny, it's funny throughout it's very, very dark humor. But nonetheless, it's funny. It's filled with incident, it's teeming with these wonderful incidents. So here's a ballad cellar who's died of drink. There is a woman pouring drink down a baby's throat, cripple having drink, pour down her throat, a man fighting, fighting with a dog over a bone. A carpenter pawning the tools of his trade in order to buy more gin bodies being disinterred, a drunken baker impaling his own child, a barber hanging himself because nobody's coming in to have their heads shaved to have their wigs fitted. And this central image was inspired by one of the most notorious crimes of the early 18th century. A woman called Judith Dfor French, mark my words, whose daughter was taken into the care of the parish. Um, and, but Judith Dufour had visiting rights. So one day she and her co-conspirator went to visit the daughter in the poor house, took her out for the day, murdered her in order to sell her clothes to buy gin. It still resonated as one of the most horrific court cases of the early Georgian period. So that is Judith due for, but she's more than Judith due for. She is the Madonna. She is an icon. She is a pastiche of one of the central images of Christianity as the Madonna who is dropping the Christ child, the Redeemer, to his certain death of the original sketches of this, that was the ground. Hogarth removed that so it was clear he was going to die. There is no hope here. This you can go to where Gin Lane was. It's just the continuation of Dreary Lane Bo below near Oxford Street. It's about 300 yards from where Fagan's Kitchen was. It's about eight 80 years difference in time because there is an absolute difference between a Dickensian slum and a hogarthian slum. A Dickensian slum is filled with horror and pity and hope, and hope is dashed. And then all you can do is weep in a hogarthian swam. There is no hope to begin with <laugh>. And all you can do is laugh. That is the truth of satire. We laugh at the horror because we can do nothing else. And of course, I've pinched it over and over again as a perfect template for urban decay. So here we are. Um, this is hoodies. Um, uh, this is when, uh, what's his face opened the pubs again. Um, this is, uh, a pastiche, uh, about, uh, the cocaine use in the media world of London. This is, hang on, this is hen Knights in Central London <laugh>. And, uh, at the moment I'm actually working on a, working on a book where I'm, I'm drawing on a kind of pal est of Gin lane. And so this is, this is Gin Lane being discussed by property developers. And uh, this is a nice image of Gin Lane Tube Station, which <laugh>. Um, so there's Hogarth and he cast an enormous shadow and he cast it onto our next great hero, who is James Gilroy, who, uh, was flourishing at the end of the 19th century, end of the 18th century, beginning of the 19th century. Uh, and who produced if Gin Lane brings all the qualities of a political cartoon together, Gil Ray sets in concrete the template. Uh, and this is more or less a type specimen of political cartoon where you take, as I described, recognizable real human beings. You transform them through the magic of caricature into marionettes being set up in a narrative of the caricaturist or cartoonist's own devising in order to mock them to make a political point. And this is the plump putting in danger and it's pit, and b, apart dividing the world up between them. Now, the point about this is, of course, like every other cartoon, it is an allegorical image. Uh, and it could work as an allegorical image painted on the side the wall of a palace. It could be 80 foot, 80 foot, 50 foot pillars. Gods statesmen in togas, a plum pudding in the middle, fighting over it. It would've stunk. This works because this is that big. He has taken these two men who are fighting over the destiny of the world and reduced them as a long, tall streak of misery. And a short ass in exile. Bonaparte said Gil Ray was more dangerous to him than 12 generals.'cause he always dreamed about that tool. And they're engaged in a food fight. Look at these great men, these great men. They're just engaged in a food fight. What a ridiculous thing for them to do. It brings them down to size. It, ret controls them, re narrativize, it evens up the score on our behalf. And this is the image which actually inspired me to become a cartoonist. When I was 10 years old. I saw it in my sister's history textbook. And I just looked at this and all the other Gil Rays and Crookshanks and Rowlands and tens. And I thought, God, this is so wonderful. This is so wonderful.'cause we're taking the piss out of the power and we are doing it in a beautiful way. And I went to my father's old desk and I found some nibs, and I started trying to cross action the way that Gil Ray etched. And it's, um, he's a man we honor, he almost certainly committed suicide, having gone previously mad through drink, basically, um, killed himself two weeks before the Battle of Water loom. And on the 200th anniversary of his death, we, uh, as God was chairman of the British Cartoonist Association at the time, we had a Gil Guray dinner. And I commissioned from the Cumbrian Plumb Pudding Company, a genuine plumb pudding, weighed three stone <laugh>. I got, uh, my two colleagues, uh, Bob Moran, who was sadly gone to the bad recently and Ben Jennings to dress up as pit and bonaparte carving. And then we ate it. It was great. Um, and, uh, the point about Gilroy is he never flinched from the central purpose of satire, which is not as, and Martin said, I might explain why I've never worked for private eye. It's because he in hislop hates my guts, basically. That's the simple reason. Um, and probably because I've repeated this line many often, very often, he, I've in hislop often said, the purpose of satire is to puncture pomposity, which I believe to be one of the most pompous phrases in the English language. The purpose of satire is in the lines of the old joke about the kid who comes back from his first day at work and complains to his mum about what a bastard the foreman is, said, well, if he's so smart and clever, come, he shits and he's gonna die. And that's what it is. It's reminding those people who think they're more powerful than us, that they're better than us, they're wiser than us, they should be richer than us, and more powerful than us. Uh, they should be in control of our destiny, that they like us shit, and they like us will die. Simple as that. It's the great leveler, shitting and dying. The great leveler, great leveler and Hogarth instinctively understood this. So this image, which I, I love this so much, it appears to be a jingoistic celebration of our victory at the Battle of the Nile. There's Jack tar, the naval avatar of John Bull Bipping Bonaparte on the face, sitting a stride the globe. Uh, and, uh, but it's called fighting for the Dunhill. It just all sort a load of shit. And this is a very early Gil Ray. I discovered this for the first time two years ago in a print shop in London. I'd never seen it before. I thought I'd seen every single Gil Ray and what it is. Who did this when was about 22. It is the only image I'm aware of, of a serving prime minister in this case case, the Marcus of Rockingham, um, both vomiting and defecating simultaneously. This should be on the bank notes. This is what being, this is what being British is all about, believe me. And another early Gil Ray, this is just a sort of cheap J at the Scots 'cause they're always good for a laugh. Uh, um, this is a, a Scotsman failing to understand how to use a latrine. Um, but more to the point I'm kicking up against the power is this fantastic image of pick when they first introduced paper money to help pay the Napoleonic wars. And he's king Maass in reverse. So, um, so everything he touches turns to paper, but he is, again, this is tearing aside the raymonds of power to show the stinking pissing, shitting, sweating human being underneath where he's literally vomiting money and shitting into the Bank of England. And, um, this image about Char, uh, George II and his consort being told by Pitt, the younger about the assassination of the King of Denmark, there is no reason whatsoever for the king and his consorts to be shown at stool beyond the fact. It's just funny to see the king having a dump because he shits and he will die. And, uh, this wonderful, wonderful image where it is actually a genuinely patriotic image where the king literally embodies the nation, his head up in Northumberland, repelling the French invasion fleet by shitting out of his asshole in Portsmouth. If you've been there recently, it could be a photograph <laugh>. And let's, let's move beyond, beyond the Cloacal here. So, you know, let's not forget the rest of it. So this is the, uh, this is the Turkish ambassador presenting his credentials to, uh, George III at the quarter of St. James. Uh, which is of course a similar vein to this dirty postcard by Donald McGill, which was by inspiration for this cartoon about the collapse of Northern Rock <laugh>. Um, and you know, it's not just the Brits doing, this is obviously the death of Mara by the great French revolutionary painter, David, who likewise did this image. Um, and that's, that's the British establishment there. You can tell that by its black leathery wings. And you can also tell because it's, it's it's asshole is the face of George ii, uh, shitting bayonets on the po. And a a hundred years later, this is another French, uh, French cartoonist at the time of the Anton cordial when Edward III visited Paris. And there's Britannia lifting up her skirts, showing his face. And, uh, this is a frankly disgraceful image I did at the time of the London Olympics because they were threatening to sue anybody who used the Olympic rings in an unauthorized fashion <laugh>. So I just, I was just rather hoping they'd sue me in a test case and we could get a, a kind of veterinarian proctologist to being a, bring a real five assed pig into court. But unfortunately, they never sued. And this was an image I did the day before in Obama's inauguration, where they're hosing, uh, Bush and Cheney off the stars and stripes. That's a, that's a Tony blessed skid mark there, <laugh>. And, um, this is a cartoon I did just before on the first anniversary of nine 11 when they were planning to, uh, invade Iraq. And Blair recalled parliament momentarily. Oh yes, I remember Parliament and Bush went to the United Nations and they were basically engaged in a conspiracy lit of the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people they'd never met. And interestingly, um, not only did several readers complain about this, but so did the editor of the Guardian, Adam Rusbridger the next day saying, oh dear, couldn't you have put some underpants on them, <laugh>? Because we all know that bear, I mean, amongst all primates, bearing your buttocks is a way of taunting somebody else. So, you know, Alan Rusbridger with the greatest respect to him. And the readers were more offended by the prime ministerial and presidential bottoms than they were by the fact that these men were engaged in a conspiracy to led to the deaths of hundreds and hundreds of thousands of people they'd never met. And, uh, this along the same theme. This is there about, about to, to lick the presidential bum. And I filed this and my then editor that day was Steven Moss, very good friend of mine, and he phoned me up and said, Martin, Martin, I've just seen the cartoon. I've got a terrible hangover today. Um, any chance of making the tongue of its, it's making me feel sick. I said, my aim is to please. And we should now have some look at that, look at that Disney, nothing. Anyway, cartoon, let's get to that cartoons, a bit of, you know, art history here. Cartoon Gilroy had no idea what you meant if you said, oh, you are a cartoonist. I said, well, you know, cartoon is a preparatory sketch for an old painting, first coined 1841 and the pages of Punch Magazine, when they were having cartoons sketches for the new, um, murals in the New Houses of Parliament, which were being built at the time. And Dickie Doyle showed the London poor Huling from the economic downturn trying to keep warm in the studios where they were showing up. And that's the origin of the word. That's what cartoon comes from. Every day is a school day. And, um, it's been an extraordinarily powerful and dominant form. The punch. 70 years later, tenal, the illustrator of Alice Wonderland, does this image of Bismarck being sacked by Kaiser William ii. Both of them thought this was an absolute appropriate comment and the best comment imaginable on what had happened. And again, it's an image which we've nicked over and over again. This is when Boris Johnson was sacked for lying by, uh, Michael Howard. And this is when Liz Truss resigned. The boat sunk by this point, so she's floating up to the surface. And 40 years on, you get the date. The great David Lowe, the greatest political cartoonist of the 20th century, uh, who produces this extraordinary image. Um, the Bitters cartoon of his career. He said, when Hitler and Stalin greet each other over the slain corpse of Poland after the ribbon tr Molotov Pac at the beginning of the Second World War, a cartoon, I then pared pastiche, uh, when Tony Blair invited Margaret Thatcher to number 10 before James Callahan, after he won in 1997 that died in the wall arch socialist archer of Brussels, I believe. Yeah, the callus, uh, record of the social fabric. I presume would you have some brioche? And that's John Major under the welcome Matt. Um, also there's Boris and Putin. Boris at the beginning of the Ukraine War after, you know, the tour is just about acknowledging that they've been bankrolled by the Russians for the previous 15 years. Sh cut that out. Anyway, um, late 1920s, three men had three simultaneous insights. Interesting. The first was Conrad Laurenz, the Ologist who rec, you know, established the fact that if a gosling hatches out of an egg, you can hold a wooden spoon up to it and it'll imprint on the wooden spoon, and it will follow it around thinking is its his mother. Um, Walt Disney invented Steamboat Willie Mickey Mouse realizing that Mickey Mouse absolute brilliant icon because Mickey Mouse can be reduced to three circles, fantastic trademark. And almost exactly the same time, one of Hitler's henchmen before Hitler came to power said, Hey boss, what's with the stupid Charlie Chaplin mustache? They said, my mustache is very political, by which he meant not only did I identify him as an ordinary bloke, but also it meant that he could be turned into his own auto icon. He could be turned into his own idio Graham, he could be reduced to a black square and a black triangle, and be instantly recognizable that he was in fact collaborating with his caricature, which politicians have been doing for centuries. Because the worst thing for a politician than appearing in a cartoon and is not appearing in a cartoon 'cause it means they're insufficiently important or interesting. And, um, David Lowe Hitler was a great fan of David Lowe's. Lowe sent him a cartoon in 1930s, signed it, saying from one artist to another. And then when Hitler came to power, he started doing cartoons like this, the difficulty of sharing shaking hands with Gods a good gag. Um, and, uh, as a consequence, Lowe was placed on the Gestapo death list, along with about 20 other British cartoonists who would've been shot on site, had the Nazis invaded, including Heath Robinson, who did political cartoons for punch. Um, one wonders if the cartoon Loe sent to Hitler was there in the bunker with him, we don't know. But this cartoon, I think was, that is without question the most immediately effective cartoon of the last 50 years by Nick Garland of the Telegraph. This appeared in The Spectator when they did an interview with Nicholas Wrigley about German reunification. And had they just run the interview where Ridley was saying, you know, Cole's like Hitler, it probably would've got away. But doing this, this image, Wrigley was out of office on the day this hit the news stands because instantly you could see what the point he was making. He could not argue his way out of this. And, you know, in terms of cartoons, everybody's doing it. This is the unfortunate Giorgi pov, uh, who was the comma of mines and was murdered by Stalin in the Purges in 1937. And this is a drawing of Giorgi POV by Joseph Stalin because as the poll bureau were meeting in the 1930s and transporting entire nations into Siberia and signing off the deaths of millions, they would do drawings of each other on their position papers. I didn't say all my colleagues were fun, you know, <laugh>. Anyway, I'm talking again of, of war criminals. Um, this is, uh, Tony Blair ethics. Getting back to the Disney Point, the three things you have three things, Blair, mad Eyes, big ears, teeth. Um, a point I proved when I was sitting at a Oxbridge High table once that I was doing, I'd been commissioned to do a drawing of the fellows at Feast, um, which I then did, and they, the master refused to hang it in the senior parlor, which was quite an achievement. Um, the bloke sitting opposite me was an entomologist whose entire career was given over to teasing Beatles outta the bark of tropical hardwoods. He said, you do drawings of politicians for newspapers. Now I don't get that at all. Don't get it at all. Uh, and the cheese course came along and I just did some things and handed, he said, oh, fucking hell, it's Tony Blair as indeed it was. And I ate it. And here is Blair as a skull. Here is Blair as a skull chewing Corbin's leg. Uh, here is Obama, here is not Obama <laugh>. Um, this was turned into a poster by some anarchist friends of mine who hung it up in Uxbridge. It was there for 24 hours. You're in the rush hour. It's great <laugh>. Um, this is, uh, you know, you can do this at home, make your own Boris Johnson at home. I made another one for the Cartoon Museum there with Kenneth Baker, big cartoon fan. Um, there they are again with a pinata. I pimped, uh, of, uh, Nigel Farage, which, um, got severely beaten by the comedian Mark Steeler party we had and was then thrown off the end of Hern Bay Pier during a cartoon festival stuffed with chips. We threw him out, he floated on the water, floated out about 300 yards, and then the seagulls swooped down. It's great <laugh>. Um, here's a cartoon I did in 2016. I'm very proud of very prescient. Um, you know, as I said, you know, the worst thing that been appearing in a cartoon is not appearing in a cartoon. These two, as I said, at an American festival, I was at once, they're two cheeks of the same ass. Then took me 15 minutes to explain what that phrase means, <laugh>. But both of them are narcissists. Both of them hate being laughed at. They love attention, they hate being laughed at, which is why they have tried to control the laughter agenda. I mean, Boris Johnson lands a punchline like the R 1 0 1, to be honest. I mean, he is, as I've often said, a Tory's idea of funny. He's not funny. He can't tell jokes. Um, but he plays the fool because, you know, it will endear people to him, he thinks. Um, but in fact they hate it. Their skin appears to be inches thick. It's microns thin because they're narcissistic sociopaths. Um, and, uh, here is, here is, uh, Johnson, the day he resigns, surrounded by his various ideas of himself. And here is a 2016 that year of infamy with, um, Trump as a pool of puke on the bonnet of the car. Here he is, top of the world, ma. Here he is coming back. Oh God, this is so depressing. Arch. Let's cut him up. Let's mark, look, raise the tone. So I'm kind of slightly overrun. I hope that's okay. So yeah. Um, this of course, obviously is better. Botticelli's Venus, uh, this isn't, um, <laugh>. This is, uh, more noticeably. Uh, Anne Whitcomb, you might recognize her, uh, who's a nice woman. I mean, Anne Weum and I disagree on that, absolutely everything, probably including breathing. But I like her. She likes me, you know, and I drew her once for a thing I was doing for the spectator. I drew her from the, I was interviewing her at the same time, and she said, it's just all jolly good fun, isn't it? All these car? I said, no, no, no. And it's not jolly good. This is, this is assassination without the blood. We're trying to destroy you. No, no, no. Of course, you'd have to think that. You'd have to think that.'cause otherwise you would, they would go mad with existentialist dread thinking, you know, people like me are doing these horrible drawings of things, and I know what it's like. I mean, I've been drawn by fellow cartoonists at, at, at cartoon festivals, and, you know, somehow they managed to miss the young Harrison Ford I see in the mirror of him <laugh>. And it, it's, it's truly transgressive. Anyway, getting back to Botticelli's Venus. There we go. That's him. And there he is again. And, uh, there, there she is. Um, and you'll see various things. You, you may notice these, these things on the horizon here. They, they, they occur now and again. Um, those are fur cups. Um, an homage to merit, Oppenheimer's Obje, which is a fur cup and saucer, A surrealist obje. And as an homage, it needs to be pronounced with a thick French accent. And it's therefore Aup Aup Aup, uh, which is how I've managed to get that obscene sexual epithet onto the page of the pages of the guardian on a almost biweekly basis for the last 12 years, which may offend you. And now we get to the crux of the matter. It may offend you. I mean, as I've warned you, if you're gonna be offended, if you don't wanna be offended, you should leave. But you're still here. So presumably you want to be offended and, and people do want to be offended. I know this to my cost. Um, but, uh, you know, it's partly my job. It's my job to give offense, not to have offense taken, but to give it to target offense. And, and, you know, it's about lowering the tone. It's about making it gag. I mean, in this case, this is when, um, the boss of Apple, whose name has just escaped me, what was he called? Steve Jobs. Steve Jobs, thank you. Uh, a truly horrible man actually. And when he became the CEO again of Apple, he, he canceled all their charitable donations. He shortened his own life by refusing to be treated by proper oncologists. I mean, he was a sort of psycho nerd, like most of them. But, and he died. And I thought, well, you know, this is, this is quite a clever visual conceit of an iPad with his coffin. But on the Guardian website, people were soon saying, he is not even called in the ground in this disgusting cartoon because they didn't like the grief app down here,<laugh>, until somebody posted a link to the genuine Apple grief app where you could take out your, you know, handheld device and you could have a picture of a guttering candle on it. You could hold like an icon outside an Apple store. I mean, genuine, likewise, when the Pope died, I thought this was actually quite a sweet cartoon. What do you mean? In my pro-life, I got death threats for this. Genuinely. People wanted me to die. They told me they wanted me to die, and they wanted to do the killing bit because of this cartoon. Likewise, this cartoon, which I did for an atheist magazine, I've forgotten bloody Mother's Day. I go, don't worry about me. Um, one of the board of trustees resigned in disgust because it was so horrific because it was so offensive. It was so, it's not offensive. Um, I mean, this is offensive. This is deliberately offensive. You know, it's sort of putting the fundamental back into fundamentalism. Um, and, and this one was pretty offensive, but it wasn't as offensive as what these, this was another child sex abuse scandal, um, on the ca part of the Catholic church. And, and of course this image, which was at the time of the Danish cartoons row in 2007, um, when we had the beginning of something which now stalks the earth, which we are living with all the time, where increasingly large numbers of people, mostly thanks to that thing I referred to earlier on about how we've managed to download our collective eed into the internet. And we can just look at it in wonder all the time and hate each other forever. People think I should be allowed to say whatever I like about whoever I choose whenever I feel like it, with no consequence whatsoever. But also I myself must never be even remotely upset. And believe me, there are huge swathes of our species who believe those two things simultaneously inside their heads and the Danish cartoons business. I actually thought that Yanas Postan shouldn't have commissioned those cartoons because it wasn't about freedom of expression. It was about continuing a decades long campaign against immigrants into Danish society, in this case, targeting the small Danish Muslim population, many of whom live in dire poverty and clean the toilets and empty the bins at the islands Postan offices. However, once politically motivated Imams started peddling those images, including three more images, one of which was of a Muslim at prayer being sodomized by a dog, which I presume they must have commissioned themselves 'cause it was never in the island's Postum. Um, it changes. It changes. I know several of the Danish cartoonists involved. One of them, my friend Lar Rein, who did a cartoon of an Arab boy called Mohammed, smiling with a big grin, having written on a blackboard behind him in Arabic, the editor of Y's, Postan is a provocative racist idiot in Arabic. The editor of Y's, Postan cannot read Arabic. Neither can presumably the Muslim imams who have sentenced last to death, which suggests this has nothing to do with cartoons. It's nothing to do with representations of images. It's about power play. It's about power play. And we are just the pawns that get kicked around to the point that five of my colleagues and many other people who were murdered by men wielding assault rifles, shouting God is great, including a man we should never forget. Frederick Buzo, who was the caretaker at the island's post's offices, who was the first person to be murdered by those men wielding assault weapons, shouting God is great because bystanders, we must never forget the bystanders who have to die for these people to pursue their political agendas and about whom they do not care. One jot. And on this occasion, normally I would bring up the paper on the morning, I'm gonna do something. And this occasion, at the end of the week this happened, I, I wanted to do a particular cartoon. I wanted to do a cartoon of the prophet Mohammed with his head in his hands, so you couldn't see his face wearing a, not in my name, t-shirt. And I pitched this to the paper and to their credit, they took it incredibly seriously. And they discussed it with Islamic scholars and they discussed it with members of the British Muslim community. And they said, well, yeah, okay, we, we know what you're doing. Um, and we appreciate it, but it could lead to the lives of guardian staff in the Middle East being in genuine danger. So I said, okay, okay, well let's rethink this. And instead I came up with what I think is actually a better cartoon, which is this one, which is me slumped on my drawing board saying, well now Space cat here, my, here's my cartoon of Mohammed wearing a, not in my name T-shirt, except that some of my loved ones, rather bizarrely don't want to, uh, me to risk getting murdered. Affording a few of you, lot of rice. Smile weird. Ha. When I was doing or proposing to do the, the first cartoon, I had to check with my family. This was okay.'cause I would've had to go into hiding. And my children who were then in their twenties were apparent. I mean, my daughter was in Amsterdam at the time. Were were sick with worry. They, they were genuine. I had to, I apologized to them afterwards for putting them through that. Although my son did send me an email saying, well, if Rose says it's okay, I suppose it is so long as I can be the person to kill you. Which I thought was rather heartening, <laugh>. Um, and um, when this appeared, of course, everybody said, this is the most cowardly hearted in the history of cartooning.'cause you haven't drawn the prophet Muhammad, who, so there's people over there who want to kill me for drawing the prophet at Mohamed. There are people over there who want me to be killed by drawing the prophet Mohamed. And a couple of weeks later, Nick Cohen, then observer, a journalist, said, um, oh, you've had your head above the parapet. You've been on TV a lot talking about this. Have you got police protection? And I said, no. Oh, well, I wrote an article and they sent me a, you know, asked me if I wanted police protection, but you've done lots more than that, but you've had no police protection. And I said, no, well, there's, there's people over there who, who wants to kill me because I might draw the Prophet Muhammad. There are people over there who want me to die because I haven't drawn the prophet Muhammad. And the Metropolitan Police force couldn't give a shit. And then I thought, maybe I shouldn't have said they're the best police force money can buy quite so often in print <laugh>. Anyway, a picture of the prophet, there we go. Uh, picture of another prophet. And so everybody, everybody, everybody hates me. Everybody wants to get me this. This was, uh, the cover of, uh, new Humanist again, atheist Magazine. It's about the new humanists, uh, the new atheists, Richard Dawkins and, uh, Christopher Hitchens, uh, which was described as the most grossly homophobic cartoon ever published on the chat rooms on the new humanist website. Um, apparently I drawn Dawkins as a stereotypically gay man, which he, he isn't gay, uh, because of his limp wrists. They're not limp. They're like that. And they were saying, this is disgusting. This is disgusting. The worst cartoon ever, ever, ever published. I needed to die because of this. And a Brit came in and said, no, no, no, no, he's, he's just being happy. It's like fathering infant Thomas. Hello clouds. Hello. He's just being happy. And they just carried on arguing about this until somebody said he is wearing sandals. A well-known gay signifier <laugh>. And you just sort of despair and you just despair and you despair went you get wander the lone shark who, uh, I created during the coalition. It was a nice, nice sort of big teeth named after the Wonga Payday Loan Company, uh, who donates money to the Tory party. And every time Wonga appeared, somebody said this was a disgraceful libel on these Harris creatures of the deep, hundreds of thousands of whom are killed each year to provide the ingredients for Chinese cuisine. And I get the point. But if a shark objects, they can show it in their own uniquely sharky ways. Likewise, in that foul, foul week just before the referendum, the beginning of which an alleged jihadi murdered dozens of people in a gay disco in Florida, at the end of which Joe Cox was murdered on the streets of an English town by an English Nazi who stabbed her and shot her. And a week later, Nigel Farrah said We'd had a revolution without a shot fired in anger. And they, of course, they were described as lone wolves, lone wolves, nothing to do with the fact they've been radicalized on the internet where we've dumped our id. And so I did this cartoon of the lone wolves looking At the internet being radicalized by this madness, this retic madness, these endless lies and fantasies. And, um, again, Nick Cohen went on Twitter and said, occasionally Rosen does a cartoon that sticks in the mind. This is one of those. And about 12 comments down, somebody said, but don't you think it offers a very negative view of wolves and other canid species? Likewise, when I did this cartoon on the anniversary of the Battle of Passion, Dale, somebody said, this is the most offensive cartoon of all time. It wasn't the most offensive cartoon in that afternoon, for God's sake. I mean, just taking offense. I am imp I I think therefore I'm offended. I'm offended. Therefore, I am. Uh, whereas this one was deliberate, absolutely deliberate again in 2017, after the disastrous election, after the Refall Fire, which is the most significant political event in this country for 40 years, if we were only smart enough to realize why. And I wanted to do a cartoon of a great lead cloud, about to crush Britain, the shape of Britain, about to crush it, just being kept off from crushing it by the shell of the Grenfell Tower. And it wasn't working. Sometimes it's in my head. I can't get onto a piece of paper that big. And so I saw this after the Finsbury Mosque attack when a Welsh Nazi this time drove into a group of Welsh was outside the Finsbury Mosque, murdering one of them. And the murder weapon, which is the truck, had been holed up and it was waiting for the forensic teams to come up. And I just rang up my editor at The Guardian Huu and I said, Hey, let's do this. And he said, yeah, why not? Ah, let's do it. And so it says, you know, read the Son and the Daily Mail because they too have politicized these people. They have radicalized these people. It's part of their agenda. And, um, two days later, the Daily Mail wrote a full page editorial. I wasn't named 'cause it was written by a friend of mine, actually, Roger Ton. Um, I was imagining I was just a sort of glove puppet on the end of Cath Weiner's hand. And, um, it contains the phrase describing me disgusting, deranged, sick and offensive words. I will have carved into my gravestone.<laugh> Martin Rosen. Let's be generous. 1959, 2025. Let's be kind. Disgusting, deranged, sick and offensive, the daily male <laugh>. And was it ever thus? And was it a bit worse? Quite often, again, we get back to Gilroy. This is a cartoon he did about the wig opposition coming to pay homage to the Prince Regent's. Uh, happy News. This is the colorized version, um, of, uh, his daughter, princess Charlotte kissing her bottom, called the presentation. And Gil Ray rather foolishly then called it the Wise Men's Offering. And on the basis of that, he was arrested for blasphemy. Now this is when in the 1790s if you stocked a copy of Thomas Payne's, the Rights of Man, you could be transported to Australia for five years. So blasphemy was a big deal. I mean, it was a big deal. And actually, Gil Ray got off because a very ambitious young Tory MP called George Canning, said, I'll get you off, I'll get you off. Um, and did a Faustian Pact, Gil Ray Dian Pact and started working for the anti Jacobin, started doing car pro-government cartoons. At the same time he was drawing pit as a toad stall, appearing out of a dung heap, uh, and canning understood, had to appear in a cartoon. And he kept on getting his friends and his agents to petition. Gil Rad said, put me in a cartoon. Put me in a cartoon, put me in a cartoon. And he finally produced this magnificent image, promised horrors of the French in Beijing. You could step into this cartoon and walk for days. And it's just magnificent of Jacobin army marching down the Mao Pal Mao and barely noticeable hanging from a lamppost is canning <laugh>. So he is put him there. But he said, forgive the phrase, fuck you, fuck you. And this is how I said goodbye to Tony Blair. This is the last slide very, very briefly. After Tony Blair, after leading, you know, being responsible for the death of hundreds of thousands of people he'd never met, um, making Serial Misjudgments goes on a sort of leaving tour that last six months, finally resigns and uh, hey everyone, look at these great retirement presence, A fork earth from everybody at the eu, a fur cuff from Gordon and Fair Cop in Die From the Grateful People of Iraq, Afghanistan, all you guys. And once more, I got an email that back then I didn't get, uh, death threats on social media. I got 'em by email.'cause the Guardian asked that I put my email address underneath the Guardian on the website 'cause they're a liberal paper. Like, you know. And, um, this wasn't a death threat. It was saying, why do you have to be so unrelentingly negative all the time?<laugh> and I sold this, actually, this is a good cartoon. This is what awards this cartoon. So I asked, well, why do you have to email a total stranger to complain about things you didn't even have to look at in the first place? And anyway, I think Fair Coffin die 'cause you haven't got it. Fuck off, fuck off, fuck off and die. I think Fair Coffin Die is a really good gag. 15 minutes later he replied, I've only just got it. That's brilliant, <laugh>. At which point I realized that my work that day was done as it is here this evening. Thank you very much for listening. I was, when we were talking earlier on about how the last few years must have been a, a gift to, um, a satirical cartoon is because of the rate of change and the madness of it all. You've said, well, maybe not. And explain why. Would you like to tell people why? Well, I mean, uh, essentially Martin, it's about demarcation. We're the ones meant to be doing the jokes, not them. I mean, it's it's simple as that. Um, I've been doing this job for 40 years now, and, and I have observed politicians at close, in close detail close up. And, you know, at the ends of when they've been in power for too long, they start going mad and they start losing control of the plot because they are sort of immersed in their own obsessions. And they, and it's, it was obvious in John Major's government after Black Wednesday, when it was week after week after week after week after week. Um, and they became the first postmodern government because they were trading purely on irony. Um, and, and so the BSE scandal, um, they'd taken our national dish and through encouraging people to feed the powdered brains of cows to other cows, had rendered our national dish, not only deadly, but likely to drive you mad first. Um, which Swift could not have made that up on a good day. Um, and this, all the governments, I think actually from Cameron onwards, um, Blair and Brown were entirely different kind of madness. But the Blair from Cameron Norman, essentially they've been driven by an urge to troll guardian readers. That's the only thing they're interested, they're interested in annoying us. Um, which is not a good ground for public policy, I feel. Um, but certainly, uh, we now get to the point where, you know, the, the governing party is tearing itself to pieces over a policy which is costing billions of pounds, which will involve about 12 people being sent to a East African country from which they'll probably then be deported. And again, you know, in, in the wildest imaginings of Rabbi or something like you, you cannot think of anything quite that mad. Do you ever find yourself, um, trying to draw or, uh, a subject which is so depressing and heavy that you don't know what to do? And it kind of, you know, Um, I, I have, well, I I have a sort of rather important consideration, which is if I don't file, they won't pay me. And humor is only part of the artillery of a political cartoon. You can do poignant moving cartoons. But there were, I think it was 2014 where absolutely everything was appalling. There was Crimea, there was Isis, there was Gaza, there was other, I mean, it was just relentless. And I was doing the cartoon every day for four weeks 'cause Steve be decided to go on holiday. And I was actually doing six a week. And, and at the end of it, my wife and I ran away to stay with some friends of ours in Greece. And I could actually literally feel the weight of the world lifting off my shoulders as I drank the first bottle of Reina. Um, and no, sometimes it, it is, it is truly terrible. I mean, certainly the last four months have been terrible. How do you, how do you comment about this? How do you comment about this particularly as it goes on and on and on, and what new do you say? What do you add to the debate? What do you add to the conversation? Um, and you know, likewise, after nine 11, I remember I was actually working with the Scotsman at the time, and I, and I spent all that afternoon staring at a blank sheet of paper thinking, how the hell do I do with this? This is a mass grave, this is. And I ended up doing a cartoon of this sort of skull, like pool of smoke coming out from lower Manhattan and to vouch to bite out the flame on the torch of the Statue of Liberty, which actually on reflection is a pretty good response. Um, but, you know, sometimes one feels like, uh, Stein, that of which we cannot speak, we should remain silent. But you know, you've gotta file One, one of the striking memories of your talk. In fact just dawned on me that there's an enormous number of men that you have satirized the dominantly male. Yep. Victims. Do you think that's accident or just that these are the people in power and As a patriarchy? Martin Yeah,<laugh>. Well, I think I know that, but, um, that's why I'm standing here. Um, well, uh, I could have shown you lots and lots and lots of cartoons of Theresa May, but we've forgotten about her. I could have showed you lots and lots and lots and lots of cartoons of Margaret Thatcher. Um, you draw who's there. Yeah. Basically people say, why don't you? Well, you know, every time there is a government members of the opposition, uh, no. When every time there's a government supporters of the government party will say, why don't you do a cartoon about them? Because they're not in power. That's the reason why. And, you know, people assume I'm on the left, assume I'm on their side. Well actually, you know, there's three kinds of politics. The politics which seeks to wield power, the politics which seeks to exert power and the politics which seeks to thwart it. And the third is the most useless, but the most honorable. And I am there to just sort of say, whisper in their ears. Not only are you mortal, you've also got really stupid nose and you know, you're you shit. And you're gonna die. And they will take their revenge one way or another. Or they'll pretend it's a matter of, you know, they'll pretend to laugh. So I would say my role in relationship to my subjects mind over matter. They pretend they don't mind, and I pretend I matter. So. Okay. Uh, thanks for great, uh, talk, uh, a lot of, uh, fun. And I, I like also how you talk about how you're often friends or you like the people that you, uh, satirize or draw. And I wonder, have you ever, um, regretted a drawing or thought in hindsight, oh, maybe I got that bit wrong, or, oh yes, that was too straight <laugh> That you uh, you may or may not be familiar with the fact that I was absent from the pages of the Guardian for four months last summer because of a drawing I did of Richard Sharp. Um, which included unbeknownst to me what were in fact, well-known antisemitic tropes. And I hadn't realized, and I was so ashamed that I actually asked for time off and when it was worked out and when, and I apologized as a, you know, I've got three golden rules. Um, I never attack anybody less powerful than me. I only, I never attack people for what they are. I attack 'em for what they think and do. And if I have offended somebody I haven't specifically targeted, I always, always apologize. And I hadn't targeted Richard Sharpe, but people made the observation, well, a guy called Dave Rich, um, with whom I'd since discussed it at length and I had lunch with him and we've done sort of truth and reconciliation because then he sort of said, yes, okay, you have seen go in peace. And I said, I'm sorry. And if I could rew that cartoon, I would because it ruined my life for about, I thought my career and my reputation were destroyed. But, um, I think I've got my honor back because people have accepted my apology. Um, for the most part, yes. The ones I regret are the ones where I have offended people I haven't targeted when I've targeted somebody and they are offended, that is my job. So I give a, I'm giving a, on a tour at the moment where I'm giving a talk, saying, giving the gift of offense. I'm giving it when it is taken. That's different 'cause I haven't given it, but I actually take the offense, which is normally a reciprocal gift 'cause I've been offended by them. That's why I'm a satirist. I'm permanently offended by the behavior of these people. But I beautifully wrap it up in Crate paper with a lovely silk ribbon, and I place it on their doorstep and I ring the doorbell. Then the editor of the Daily Mail opens the door after I've set fire to the present and stamps On it, it and only then realizes it's full of dog shit.<laugh>. So I, I think, um, like me, you know why we open the paper and look for Martin's cartoons every day. What a huge privilege to hear you talk. We've really enjoyed. Thank you very much for listening. Thank you very much.