Wednesday 26th October 2016                 Change text size:

Book review: The Co-operative Revolution: A Graphic Novel – Polyp (2012)


The Co-operative Revolution is a graphic novel by Manchester-based cartoonist Polyp that looks at the beginnings of the co-operative movement and the benefits and positive impacts this business model has had on society, the environment and business.

The book is particularly relevant now, as more and more people begin to question the effects of capitalism and search for a business model that is sustainable yet profitable. The novel presents a business model that can be used as a robust foundation for future wellbeing.

Illustrated by acclaimed cartoonist Polyp, it charts the history of the co-operative movement, beginning with the Rochdale Pioneers through to the modern day. It gives a detailed and insightful account of how co-operatives began, why they were successful and why people backed them.

Co-operative Revolution gives the movement context and demonstrates how radical the idea was in the 1800s when the first successful co-operative retail store was set up by the Rochdale Society of Equitable Pioneers, during a time of chronic unemployment, poverty and social inequality.

The book offers a great introduction to those that don’t know much about how co-operatives are run and all the different strands this encompasses. It is full of anecdotes and examples to allow readers to understand the impacts and values co-operative have.

Co-operative Revolution is child friendly and an excellent educational tool, but is still engaging and suitable for adults that want to learn more about the subject.

The novel is available the view for free on the Co-operative Group’s website.

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