Britain began the twenty-first century convinced of its creativity. Throughout the New Labour era, the visual and performing arts, museums and galleries, were ceaselessly promoted as a stimulus to national economic revival, a post-industrial revolution where spending on culture would solve everything, from national decline to crime. Tony Blair heralded it a “golden age.” Yet despite huge investment, the audience for the arts remained a privileged minority. So what went wrong?
In Cultural Capital, leading historian Robert Hewison gives an in-depth account of how creative Britain lost its way. From Cool Britannia and the Millennium Dome to the Olympics and beyond, he shows how culture became a commodity, and how target-obsessed managerialism stifled creativity. In response to the failures of New Labour and the austerity measures of the Coalition government, Hewison argues for a new relationship between politics and the arts.
Since storming to victory on September 14th 2015 with 59.5% of the vote in Labour's leadership election, Jeremy Corbyn has faced many challenges; including from within his own party.
On Saturday he dealt with the most significant threat to his leadership to date. He increased his win to 61.8% in the leadership election, an unarguable mandate from his party members. The results of this weekend will have an overwhelming effect on the landscape of British politics. But will the PLP now unify behind their leader?
In the build up to the Labour Party Conference, the Leadership Election 2016, as well as the World Transformed festival (hosted by a coalition of grassroots groups and powered by Momentum), Verso has put together an essential reading list. Download our free eBook on Corbyn and the Future of Labour to get 40% off all of the books below until September 30th (click on the discount link within the ebook).
The campaign against Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has been one of the most obvious examples of media bias in politics within living memory. Following the pattern started during the Scottish independence referendum, the mainstream press has launched an all-out assault on Corbyn, often in conjunction with the right-wing of the party.
In this exclusive extract from Corbyn: The Strange Rebirth of Radical Politics, Richard Seymour analyses the media campaign to discredit Corbyn's leadership bid and the reasons for its failure.