The purpose of the edition is to ask how the approach taken by Eric Hobsbawm (interviewed in it), Martin Jacques, Stuart Hall et al might be updated for the Left's current purposes. How might the 'new times' of post-2008 political economy and post-Blairite politics be understood today, so that the Left can work with sociological forces, and not against them? This question isn't without some controversy, seeing as how it typically credits the Left's opponents with considerable cultural credibility and political authority. At a discussion of this legacy at the ippr last night, a number of former contributors noted the curiosity of the fact that this was a journal that was both tightly disciplined, fiercely edited and bankrolled by the British Communist Party, while also injecting a form of pluralism, lightness and open-mindedness into the Left that represented an exit route from the macho ideological infighting of the early 1980s.
My contribution has already been trailed in The New Statesman, and David Miliband's was trailed in The Observer on Sunday. You can also read an edited version of Tristram Hunt's contribution on the ippr website.
Update: You can watch Martin Jacques, David Miliband, Charles Clarke and Graeme Cooke discussing all of this below.