Socialism for a Sceptical Age

  • ID: 2247563
  • Book
  • 224 Pages
  • John Wiley and Sons Ltd
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This original volume offers a critical examination of a number of developments which in recent years have undermined the idea of socialism and eroded its electoral appeal. Among these developments are the collapse of communist regimes, the fragmentation of the constituencies upon which earlier socialist advances depended, changes in the organization and dynamics of capitalism, and a death of agencies committed to the socialist project.

The book argues that a social order dominated by the logic of capital and competition cannot, despite all the positive claims made on its behalf, produce the conditions which make true citizenship and community possible. By contrast, socialism offers an attractive and feasible programme for the realization of these ideals. Miliband argues that socialism cannot be seen as an answer to all the ills which have plagued humankind. Socialism, in his view, has to be understood as part of an age–old struggle for a more just society and he believes that, seen in this light, socialism remains not only desirable but also perfectly possible. Moreover, he believes, socialism will, in time, come to command a majority support which its advancement requires.

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1. The Case Against Capitalism.

2. Socialist Aspirations.

3. Mechanisms of Democracy.

4. The Mixed Economy, Socialist Style.

5. Constituencies, Agencies, Strategies.

6. The Politics of Survival.

7. Prospects.


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Socialism for a Sceptical Age is in some sort Miliband′s political testament. Starting from the far left rather than the revisionist or ′new times′ right, cosmopolitan rather than parochial, concerned with reinventing socialism rather rewriting Clause Four, Miliband still comes uncannily close to converging on the common sense of Labour politics.′New Statesman and Society

′His last book is a valuable contribution to an ongoing debate. I strongly recommend everyone interested in politics to read it and discuss its ideas.′ New Times

′The excesses of privatization, and the decline in public provision of health, education and transport, are causing a reassessment of the market–led revolution of the 1980s. Miliband′s thoughtful, well–written tract is a contribution tothat reassessment.′ Political Studies

′Contributes to academic analysis, while also providing food for thought ... Miliband′s final work is important and challenging.′ Contemporary Politics

′Miliband at his best as a critic of capitalism and a defender of socialism.′ Green Left

′His last work is invaluable reading ... this book leaves one′s thinking rejuvenated ... As with all Miliband′s writing, it is concise and easy to read as well as being intellectually stimulating ... I cannot recommend it too highly.′ Critical Social Policy

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