Soundings

Articles from No. 53, Spring

A Belated Howl of Grief
Peter Hook, Unknown Pleasures. Inside Joy Division, Simon & Schuster 2012 Joy Division were shocked into life by an electrical charge that coursed through mid-1970s culture: punk. When the Sex Pistols played at Manchester Free Trade Hall in...
A Connected Society: Social Connectedness Has a Key Part to Play in the Search for Equality
Political conditions in many countries presently demand that we undertake serious thinking all the way to the roots about how to build a progressive politics of egalitarian empowerment. In this essay I focus on the contribution that connectedness can...
After Neoliberalism Analysing the Present: The Founding Editors of Soundings Set out the Framing Analysis for Our Online Manifesto
With the banking crisis and the credit crunch of 2007-8, and their economic repercussions around the globe, the system of neoliberalism, or global free-market capitalism, that has come to dominate the world in the three decades since 1980, has imploded....
An Exercise in Self Justification
Andrew Adonis, Education, Education, Education: Reforming England's Schools, Biteback Publishing 2012 This is a book with serious consequences, not least because Andrew Adonis thinks he will be making Labour policy for 2015; a view shared by sections...
Can Labour Break Away from Centralism?
Jon Wilson, Letting Go: How Labour can learn to stop worrying and trust the people, Fabian Society 2012 The British labour movement has been running on thin air for longer than it cares to recognise: in some respects New Labour could be seen as...
Editorial
Neoliberalism and how to end its dominance has been a central concern in Soundings since its inception. In this issue, we carry the framing statement for our online manifesto, After neoliberalism?, written by the journal's three founding editors, Stuart...
Green Shoots? Jo Littler and Susanna Rustin Interview the New Leader of the Green Party
Jo Green Party policies on the whole seem to be left-wing and anti-neoliberal: arguing for re-nationalising the railways, the social redistribution of wealth and a citizens' living wage, and arguing against economic growth as the best indicator of...
Has Multiculturalism in Britain Retreated? If Properly Understood, Multiculturalism Continues to Flourish in Britain
Scholars who are critical and supportive of multiculturalism note how it is in 'retreat' or in question in different countries as leading politicians are rejecting it. (1) Britain is often cited as a place in which this retreat or questioning occurs....
In France, Will Change Be Now or Never? Can the Socialists Achieve Real Change in France?
In May 1981 Francois Mitterrand became the first Socialist President of the French Fifth Republic. His two electoral slogans - 'Change Life' (inspired by vagabond poet Arthur Rimbaud) and 'Calm Strength' - managed to inspire hopes of radical change...
Leveson and the Prospects for Media Reform: Can the Press Barons Be Brought under Control?
Just before the phone hacking crisis broke in July 2011, the Westminster Media Forum held a seminar on the prospects for future communications legislation. In a discussion focused on how best to deregulate the industry to ensure future growth, one...
Multiculturalism Reloaded?
Ted Cantle, Interculturalism: the new era of cohesion and diversity, Palgrave Macmillan 2012 Ted Cantle's achievement was to shape national policy on race relations during the years of New Labour government. He developed and applied the concept...
Railways - beyond Privatisation: A Strategy for Bringing Railways Back into Community Control
Britain's railways have always been profoundly political. Ever since the inauspicious opening day of the Liverpool and Manchester Railway on 15 September 1830, when William Huskisson MP was mown down by Stephenson's Rocket, railways have had an uneasy...
Revisiting the Olympic Legacy
One of the most important debates about the Games is the nature of their legacy. First of all let's look at the claim about their effects on increasing sporting participation. Mark It's no surprise that soon after the Games athletics clubs in the...
The State of the Left: Labour's Priorities after Blair and Brown
Labour lost office in 2010 after thirteen years in government - the longest stretch of Labour government the party has managed since it was founded a hundred years ago. It more than doubled the previous record, and was marked by three general election...
When Is Peace? Women's Post-Accord Experiences in Three Countries: What Has Happened to Women's Hopes for Peace in Northern Ireland, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Israel-Palestine?
Peace is elusive. I don't mean that it eludes us in a practical sense - we think we have it, and then war returns. This is often so, of course. No. I mean in the sense that it's difficult to be sure what conditions we may confidently say add up to...
Why It's Still Kicking off Everywhere: Are We Witnessing a Global Revolt against Neoliberalism?
Two years on from the Arab Spring, I'm clearer about what it was that it inaugurated: it is a revolution. In some ways it parallels the revolutions of before - 1848, 1830, 1789 - and there are also echoes of the Prague spring, the US civil rights movement,...
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