Europe’s forward march of labour halted: Crisis and transformation in left-wing imaginaries in Britain, France, and Italy during the long 1970s
Supervisor: Martin Conway
My research explores the contestation, transformation, and redefinition of left-wing imaginaries in Britain, France, and Italy during the intersecting political, economic, and cultural crises of the long 1970s. I explore how the discourses of class and class political subjectivity that once gave the left its core constituency, identity, sense of self, and global ambition was increasingly the subject of intense contestation and re-evaluation during the period, with important and longstanding consequences. I interrogate what political actors across the left political spectrum meant by their competing definitions of collective political subjectivity and compare the changing discourses between and through the three countries as the crisis of the 1970s developed. In so doing, my research hopes to open up new understandings of the changes which occurred in left politics in Europe in the final decades of the twentieth century.