The New Old World

A magisterial analysis of Europe's development since the end of the Cold War.
The New Old World looks at the history of the European Union, the core continental countries within it, and the issue of its further expansion into Asia. It opens with a consideration of the origins and outcomes of European integration since the Second World War, and how today's EU has been theorized across a range of contemporary disciplines. It then moves to more detailed accounts of political and cultural developments in the three principal states of the original Common Market—France, Germany and Italy. A third section explores the interrelated histories of Cyprus and Turkey that pose a leading geopolitical challenge to the Community. The book ends by tracing ideas of European unity from the Enlightenment to the present, and their bearing on the future of the Union. The New Old World offers a critical portrait of a continent now increasingly hailed as a moral and political example to the world at large.


  • “He approaches the EU with the deepest skepticism, and finds much to justify the use of his blade.”
  • “Anderson is among the most insightful and policy-relevant analysts of modern Europe.”
  • “One of the best political, historical and literary essayists of the age.”
  • “As insightful, combative and invigorating as its illustrious predecessors.”
  • “This is a hugely ambitious and panoramic political book, of a sort rarely attempted in our era of quick leader biographies and reheated histories of the Second World War.”


  • Defeat and Demoralisation in Greece: Stathis Kouvelakis

    Speaking to Real News, Popular Unity member Stathis Kouvelakis discusses the fall-out from Greece's recent snap election. With an abstention rate of 44%, this demonstrated the degree to which demoralisation and frustration have spread within the electorate - a dynamic which also contributed to Popular Unity's failure to reach the 3% threshhold to enter parliament.

    The resulting marginilasation of the progressive left leaves Greece in a dangerous position, particularly given the growing popularity of the neo-Nazi Golden Dawn, who received 6.3% of the vote and 17 seats to become the country's third-largest party. Despite this difficult position, Kouvelakis and Popular Unity remain committed to articulating an alternative programme and shifting the balance of social forces in Greece.

  • Pietro Ingrao: a life of struggle (March 30, 1915 – September 27, 2015)

    Pietro Ingrao, a hugely influential figure in Italian Communism, died yesterday, Sunday, 27th of September 2015, aged 100. A look back at his life reveals many of the debates in the post-war European left, as well as Ingrao's own commitment to a Marxism that was both uncompromising and dynamic.

    Joining the Italian Communist Party (CPI) during the Second World War, Ingrao took up arms as an anti-fascist "Partisan". In the following decades, he represented the Marxist left of the PCI, clashing several times with the Party leadership as the latter adopted increasingly reformist positions. 

    On Ingrao's hundredth birthday, long-time collaborator and ally Rossana Rossandra reflected on his life and contributions to the PCI. Read her full speech here.

    Another "Ingraian", Luciana Castellina, expands on the internal battles within the PCI, and Ingrao's attempts not only to "democratise the Party", but to develop its theoretical positions in light of developments within contemporary capitalism.

    Lucio Magri's The Tailor of Ulm assesses the rise and fall of the PCI and Ingrao's role in the tensions within the party. 

    Rossana Rossandra's The Comrade from Milan reflects on a life of radical activism - one that she often shared with Ingrao. 

    Antonio Negri'Books for Burning provides further context of the class struggles in post-war Italy that he, Ingrao and others participated in.

    The New Old World by Perry Anderson analyses another major development in this period - namely, the foundation and evolution of the European Union. 

    Finally, Luciana Castellina's Discovery of the World gives an intimate, personal account of political awakening in fascist Italy. 

    For more on Italian Communism, explore the #ItalianCommunism archive on the Verso blog.
  • Greece: "Popular Unity" is born!

    By Stathis Kouvelakis, Athens, August 21 2015

    Early this morning, 25 Syriza MPs left the parliamentary group of the party to create a new group under the name of “Popular Unity”. Most of these MPs are affiliated to the Left Platform, but some others also joined, like Vangelis Diamantopoulos and Rachel Makri, a close collaborator of Zoe Kostantopoulou.

    This is a major development in Greek politics but also for the radical Left, in Greece and at an international level. 

    Continue Reading

Other books by Perry Anderson