David Cameron and Erik Olin Wright taking the “Social” in Socialism Seriously

by Harry on October 2, 2006

Because all the Uk bloggers have linked to it, I tried out the webcameron. Cameron’s introduction is very nice. He might want to read this paper by Erik Wright: it’ll provide some nice theoretical underpinnings. Oh, and everyone else might want to look at the draft manuscript for Wright’s book, Envisioning Real Utopias. (I don’t mean to suggest that Cameron won’t want to read the whole book, I’m just helpfully pointing him to the central ideas, so he can decide whether its worth his while to read the whole thing, presuming that he’s busier than the rest of us).



shwe 10.02.06 at 1:00 pm

Quite an incredible introductory video. But the link to the Olin Wright paper was not immediate apparent to me.


Russell Arben Fox 10.02.06 at 1:47 pm

I’m only about halfway through the paper, Harry, but I can already tell it’s close to brilliant. Anything that advances socialist adn egalitarian discussions by way of an emphasis on communal values, civil society and democratic empowerment, and departs from statist language, is on the right track.


harry b 10.02.06 at 1:53 pm

The link may be exclusively in my head — when I heard him elaborating the idea that we should depend less on the state and more on society, emphasizing the social, it sounded very much like the central message of Wright’s paper (at least the last version of it I saw, which probably predates the web version, which I just found by googling). I am absolutely not suggesting that Cameron is one of us; I just thought what he said resounded well with Wright’s paper.


DC 10.02.06 at 3:03 pm

What Cameron forgot to say (but will do after reading Wright I’m sure) is “not the market” as well as “not the state”.


harry b 10.02.06 at 3:45 pm

dc — that’s why I wanted to recommend it to him. And Russell is right — I think that the paper, and the book, are extraordinarily good (though I should confess to some degree of bias).


joseph sinatra 10.02.06 at 11:46 pm

i heard Olin Wright present on this a few months ago and hoped he would address the role of power and interest in implementing his vision.

Joel Rogers and Joshua Cohen (i think) while seemingly supportive, criticize olin wright and fung along these grounds in Deepening Democracy.

when i asked him about this, OW said he would cover this in the conclusion of envisioning real utopias, which is not yet online.


joseph sinatra 10.03.06 at 2:02 pm

i’d also add that a great resource that provides examples of some of the innovations OW talks about is



BG 10.05.06 at 9:25 am

Hey neat! Erik Olin Wright is my uncle. Really!

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