Looking Left

Socialism in Europe After the Cold War
Edited by:

Europe’s most respected historians turn their attention to the fate of the Left of Europe

A New York Times Notable Book of the Year

In Europe, as in the United States, the dominant social democratic policy aims of the 1960s and 1970s—full employment, strong unions, and an economic safety net—have given way to a conservative consensus: inflation is the main enemy, the welfare state must be retrenched, unions should be cut down to size, labor markets deregulated, and state enterprises privatized. How accurate is this conventional view? Are the traditional liberal ideas in retreat throughout Europe? What policies are actually being pursued by socialist parties, whether in government or in opposition? Will the return to power of left-wing parties in Britain (under Tony Blair) and France (under Lionel Jospin) lead to any major policy changes?

In Looking Left, a distinguished group of European historians tackles these questions, examining the extent to which the end of the Cold War has contributed to the redefinition of left-wing strategy and goals and the extent of the convergence between “right” and “left.”

Contributors include Vassilis Fouskas, Peter Gowan, Francois Hincker, Paul Kennedy, Colin Leys, Thomas Meyer, Giulio Sapelli, and Donald Sassoon.