Realities

The Audacity of Disappointment: Barack Obama’s A Promised Land

Picture Credit: Karl-Ludwig Poggemann The President of the United States is having that recurring dream again. He finds himself on an unmarked street in an unknown neighbourhood; possibly on foot, possibly on bike, but distinctly alone regardless. The physical trappings of the office – motorcades, security details – are absent, as are the emotional weights. His decisions are no longer of consequence.…

Labour’s two camps: a response to Open Labour’s foreign policy pamphlet

As was probably expected, Open Labour’s pamphlet on foreign policy, launched this week, has caused some controversy. Co-authored by Harry Pitts and Paul Thompson, the pamphlet seeks to develop a new foreign policy for Labour, breaking from the ‘two camps’ mentality and narrowly conceived ‘anti-imperialism’ of the Corbyn leadership, which Pitts and Thompson argue is unsuited to the post-Cold War world. Much…

The Social Review Podcast Episode 64: Vernacular Social Democracy

Historian Jon Lawrence (author of ‘Me, Me, Me? The Search for Community in Post-War England’) sits down with Jasper to discuss his article on ‘Vernacular Social Democracy’ in the latest issue of Renewal. They dissect what the concept means, the intersection of liberal individualism with communitarianism, how Keir Starmer is doing so far, the weirdness of 2017, and much more. iTunes Link…

Vernacular social democracy and the politics of Labour

This article was originally published in Renewal. Social democracy has put down deep roots in British popular culture; this is why Johnson’s government has instinctively favoured social democratic responses to the Covid-19 crisis. This vernacular social democracy is a potent resource which Labour can use to proclaim its vision of the good society. Last year I published a history of post-war England focused…

The Heir Apparent

Photo Credit: Midia Ninja The Brazilian Workers Party has an elegant saying for its current predicament: “No grass grows under Lula’s feet”. This poetic language doesn’t quite mask what is obvious to everyone else; that since 2018, and even before, in 2010, when he left power, the creator and creature of the Brazilian left has watched his legacy be squandered on the…

Call Me By Your Name (Keith)

I like to think of myself as a young, hip and culturally au fait person who understands the lingo, political and otherwise. We all like to think of ourselves in ways that may not be entirely accurate, and we all have things in our lives – drinks we can’t drink anymore, jeans that don’t fit, songs we don’t understand, celebrities and, increasingly,…