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Ups and Downs in China

We look at the rise of China as an economic and political power

In April the first rail freight service from Britain to China left a terminal in Essex for a 7,500-mile journey to eastern...

Terrorism: What is the Truth?

It would be unfeeling not to be saddened and outraged by the Manchester and London terror attacks, or to have no sympathy for those who knew the victims. But what are we to make of the reaction to...

Pathfinders: Farron, Fossils and Fire Ice

One claim that raised eyebrows during the recent general election was Tim Farron's assertion that the UK could be completely self-sufficient in renewable energy, this despite the Lib Dems' own...

Corbyn: What He Did Achieve and What He Could Not Have

Jeremy Corbyn has shown one thing – that contesting an election on a manifesto promising to tax corporations and the rich to pay for improvements in health, housing and education for ‘the many’ is...

Editorial: Burning Injustice

So many things about the Grenfell Tower fire continue to stink, even weeks after the disaster. The flames were not even out, nor the bodies counted, before the recriminations and finger-pointing began.

Not surprisingly the building owners, Kensington and Chelsea Council, quickly came under savage criticism for spending £8.6m on a recent refurbishment aimed at creating new rentable space and prettifying the exterior with new cladding, but not bothering to install sprinklers or ensure that the cladding material was fire-proof.

Why, people wanted to know, was there only one fire exit in a building of 120 flats, an exit frequently blocked by rubbish including old mattresses which the council did not remove? And why, when the fire broke out, was there such chaos on the ground with nobody from the council on the scene to establish any kind of central meeting and information point for survivors and anxious relatives?

Is Human Nature a Barrier to Socialism?

One of a series of lectures on 'An Introduction to Pre-History'

Islington branch

Recorded: 
Sunday, 15 June 1980

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The Socialist Party's latest pamphlet

How We Live And How We Might Live by William Morris

William Morris was one of the foremost creative artists of the nineteenth century. Designer of furniture and wallpaper, printer, architect, novelist and poet, Morris was respected by the 'respectable' people of Victorian capitalist society. His upbringing was far from one of poverty. He was born in March 1834 into a wealthy capitalist family. He was sent to public school and then to Oxford where his mother wanted him to train for the clergy. At university Morris fell under the spell of Ruskin who criticised the mechanised, economically regimented nature of industrial capitalism.

As time passed the success of William Morris as a celebrated artist clashed more and more with his understanding that society was dominated by the values of money and profit. What passed as civilisation was merely the rule of Property. What was the point of being creative in a world which regarded creations of art as just a few more expensive commodities to be bought and sold? What was the point of producing great art when the mass of humanity was confined to the drudgery of wage slavery, forced to produce what was cheap and nasty for a mass market which paid no recognition to craft, skill and quality?

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