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Vol 19 No 2 2011

The essential conservatism of ‘Big Society’ rhetoric stems from its willingness to talk about social reform without talking about radical market reform – to treat the promotion of ‘good works’ and ‘good work’ as discrete challenges

Josh Booth and Will Brett

Free downloadThe long game

Editorial // Ben Jackson, Martin McIvor

Labour’s opposition is hobbled by its mixed record and unresolved divisions, but it may make more headway on issues that will rise up the country’s agenda between now and the next election.

Rediscovering Labour’s soul

Feature // Josh Booth, Will Brett

A new programmatic politics of the left could wrap a manifesto for both changing a malfunctioning state and reforming an iniquitous market around an optimistic conception of human potential.

Making sense of Maurice Glasman

Feature // Alan Finlayson

‘Blue Labour’ has created a framework within and against which Labour’s internal debate has been energised. If only for that reason it is worth taking time to work out what Glasman is all about.

Free downloadRe-embedding the housing market

Feature // Matt Griffith

We need to think seriously about whether it is a sensible idea to allow housing – a central part of the identity of people and communities – to become another global asset class.

Comprehensives and social mobility

Feature // Vikki Boliver, Adam Swift

Whatever you may have read in the newspapers, the comprehensive school system was as good for social mobility as the selective system it replaced.

Localism and the left

Feature // Phil Parvin

In as much as localists present a substantive alternative vision of politics to centralism, it would exacerbate and entrench inequalities and social injustices rather than resolve them.

Free downloadThe ‘forward march’ of Scottish nationalism

Commentary // Gerry Hassan

Just as Labour and the left had to analyse and even empathise with Thatcherism post-1983, so Labour and unionists are faced with a similar set of challenges in Scotland today.

Free downloadThe plot against the NHS

Commentary // Colin Leys, Stewart Player

Britain’s most famous post-war social achievement was unravelled through a series of step-by-step ‘reforms’, always presented as mere improvements to the NHS as a public service.

Community organising in Germany

Notebook // Leo Penta

How do models developed by the Industrial Areas Foundation and Citizens UK translate into a German context? Can German civil society become an independent and politically active partner?

Eric Hobsbawm: How to change the world

Review // David Leopold

A focus on Marxism’s historical and political dimensions neglects its conception of the good life.

Free downloadSteve Richards: Whatever it takes

Review // Hopi Sen

Would ‘Brownism without the flaws of Brown’ really have succeeded as a political strategy?

Renewal