May Day – Something for Everyone to celebrate!

2015 Posters for Peace and Justice wall calendar

Published in the 2015 Posters for Peace and Justice wall calendar.
In 2012 dozens of groups around the country decided to change that. They coordinated a general strike to take place on May Day that year, encouraging people to avoid school and work and to take part in Occupy-inspired protests against economic inequality.
Hugh D’Andrade contributed to the movement with this poster, inspired by a nineteenth-century May Day broadside by Walter Crane. He released the poster online, under a Creative Commons license, and encouraged people to download it and use it as they saw fit. Its reach spread far and wide on blogs, news sites, and community boards.

May 1st, often called May Day, just might have more holidays than any other day of the year. It’s a celebration of Spring. It’s a day of political protests. It’s a neopagan festival, a saint’s feast day, and a day for organized labor. In many countries, it is a national holiday.

The earliest May Day celebrations appeared in pre-Christian times, with the festival of Flora, the Roman goddess of flowers. It is also associated with the Gaelic Beltane, and the giving of “May baskets”, small baskets of sweets and/or flowers, usually left anonymously on neighbors’ doorsteps is a tradition.

Many pagan celebrations were abandoned or Christianized during the process of conversion in Europe. A more secular version of May Day continues to be observed in Europe and America. In this form, May Day may be best known for its tradition of dancing the maypole dance and crowning of the Queen of the May. Various Neopagan groups celebrate reconstructed (to varying degrees) versions of these customs on May 1.

The day was a traditional summer holiday in many pre-Christian European pagan cultures. While February 1 was the first day of Spring, May 1 was the first day of summer; hence, the summer solstice on June 25 (now June 21) was Midsummer.

In the Roman Catholic tradition, May is observed as Mary’s month, and in these circles May Day is usually a celebration of the Blessed Virgin Mary. In this connection, in works of art, school skits, and so forth, Mary’s head will often be adorned with flowers in a May crowning.

Walter Crane - The workers May Pole

Walter Crane – The workers May Pole

May Day, also known as International Workers’ Day, has long been a day on which the labor movement holds street demonstrations and marches. This originates with the United States labor movement in the late 19th Century. On May 1, 1886, unions across the country went on strike, demanding that the standard workday be shortened to eight hours. In more recent years this day has been taken back by the “Occupy” movement. Some peaceful, some not-so-peaceful demonstrations have been held across the US in some of the larger Metropolitan areas.

2014 Posters for Peace and Justice wall calendar.

Published in the 2014 Posters for Peace and Justice wall calendar.

Occupy the Streets

by Eric Drooker

The young woman represents the new generation stepping onto the world stage. (If you look closely, you’ll notice that she’s sowing seeds as she strides across the urban landscape.) I created this image to expand the notion of Occupy to be about public space, which has been shrinking in recent years as everything is becoming more and more privatized. The idea is to step away from your flat-screen, away from the Internet (however briefly) and into the living, breathing world. This poster was pasted onto brick walls and lampposts, and the artist physically left his studio and joined the growing crowd in the streets.
— Eric Drooker

These are 2 of the political posters that have appeared in the Posters for Peace and Justice wall calendar.

Posters for Peace and Justice 2015 wall calendar

Cover image by Joe Simboli Design

Posters for Peace and Justice 2015 Cover
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We Plant Trees — ONE MILLION and growing! Amber Lotus Publishing is proud to be a carbon-negative independent publisher with a dedication to environmental stewardship. Based in Portland, Oregon, Amber Lotus works with an extraordinary collection of artists and authors such as Katie Daisy, Geninne Zlatkis, Alex Grey, Meera Lee Patel, Thich Nhat Hanh, Pema Chödrön, Eckhart Tolle, Louise Hay, Ram Dass, and more! We create calendars and greeting cards that illuminate the sacred dimensions of everyday life — mindfulness, healthy lifestyles, and earth awareness. We strive to consistently offer products that are authentic and distinctive to bring you a sense of the eternal by nurturing your heart, renewing your soul, and expanding your mind.

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