Pg 9 – Book: Skateboarding, Power and Change

New book and website in development: ‘Skateboarding, Power and Change’ (Short working title) by Indigo Willing and Anthony Pappalardo with art/illustrations by Adam Abada.

Research for the above is being conducted throughout 2021 as part of a university approved project ‘Skateboarding and Social Justice: Activism, Power and Change’. The research team will be reviewing historical archives and contemporary sources and will also conduct interviews with a number of individuals in skateboarding. This include people working in the skate industry, community programs, brands, non profits and individuals from skating’s DIY and cultural scenes (writers, artists and filmmakers).  The project aims to contribute to a deeper understanding of change makers, grassroots and DIY activism, ethics and social equity movements in skateboarding. The sense of solidarity, self expression, fun, care and constructions of identity and belonging that are also a part of skateboarding are also themes of interest.

While stage one is focused on the US, individuals and social movements/projects in other locations will be acknowledged where relevant. The US focused side of the research project will be the basis of a book (with Palgrave Macmillan) and with more global content / extra interviews, art, stories and information shared on a website, social media and other publications in the process.

Participation may consist of a questionnaire, or 30-60 minute face to face online interview (via zoom for eg) or email interview, and is subject to a selection criteria and informed consent. This project has ethical clearance from Griffith University, Australia – GU ref no: 2021/066.

As this is a low budget, community-grounded project, there is generally no payment for participation. However, selected interviewees will receive a special thank you gift such as a postcard sized skate art print by Adam Abada (New York), a special ‘curb art’ print by Sarah Huston (Australia/LA), whimsical poster from the @werewolfcatsskating zine or stickers from community campaigns like Consent is Rad (international). Examples below.

Black and white sketch of skater and text saying Know your Stance, and Stop Asian Hate
Stop Asian Hate, Know Your Stance art by @adamabadaart
Curb art by Sarah Huston in red, yellow and black saying 'slow down, adults skating', 'drive like your parents skate here', and mock traffick signs design.
Curb art post cards by @thesarahhuston
Consent is Rad text on black skateboard sticker
Sticker from @consent_is_rad design by RT Signs Chinchilla

If you would like to know more about this project please email Dr Indigo Willing (Writer, Community Work, Sociologist and Research Fellow, Griffith University, Australia) and Anthony Pappalardo (Journalist, Author and Independent Researcher, USA) using the Contact Page Form