Politics as Theory and Politics as Practice



    1. Elected as the Member of Parliament for Sheffield Brightside (latterly Brightside and Hillsborough) in 1987, having served for eighteen years on Sheffield City Council, with seven of those as leader.
    Search for more papers by this author


In 1962, the late Professor Sir Bernard Crick published his seminal work In Defence of Politics. Fifty years on, formal political processes have never been in greater need of defending. In this article, former Home Secretary David Blunkett MP argues that in order to defend politics we need to change the way in which we ‘do’ our politics. In a 21st century response to Professor Crick's challenge to defend the role of politics in providing a counterweight to the financial markets and economic imperialism, Blunkett considers how it is possible to renew political democracy as a force for progressive change. The last five years of political and financial turmoil have seen politics smeared and even, in the case of Greece and Italy, elected governments removed and replaced by technocrats. With the power of government behind the people, it would be possible to foster a whole new spirit of seeing the political process as a way of organising, advising and yes funding a demand for something better from big institutions both public and private.