Barnaby Raine is a doctoral student at Columbia University, where he studies modern European political thought.
The following is an extract from Salvage #6: Evidence of Things Not Seen. The issue is available for pre-order here, or as part of a subscription, available here. The rest of this essay will be released online after the print issue has been released, along with the rest of the non-fiction in the issue. Our poetry, fiction and art remains exclusive to the print edition.
Measured analysis is out, polemics are all the rage. Consider this. A major study by the Institute for Jewish Policy Research finds anti-Semitic attitudes evenly spread across Britain’s political spectrum – with one clear exception: those identifying as ‘very right-wing’ are two to four times more likely to dislike Jews than anyone else. This is the context in which, in late 2016, the House of Commons Home Affairs Committee conducted an inquiry into anti-Semitism.
Their report nods to YouGov polling that finds anti-Semitism pollutes all the main parties equally, with UKIP twice as sullied: UKIP is then never mentioned again. We read that the far Right is responsible for three quarters of anti-Semitic incidents in the UK, and that it was ‘an increase in far-right extremist activity’ that provoked the writing of the report – after which the far Right, too, is never mentioned again.More
Brexit has made immigration an impossible subject to avoid, and in several trade unions and the Labour Party socialists are divided. Three schools of thought predominate. They are all rotten. Each of them borrows from enemy arsenals rather than recovering the left’s lost language of 'proletarian internationalism'. It is a coarse, imperfect dialect from the early years of the twentieth century, the language of Lenin and his comrades. It seems often hopelessly outdated now but in speaking about migration its central innovations – stressing that modern politics is a contingent and a necessarily transnational affair – make for a refreshing contrast with the certainties that only later froze into premises for our own stale debates.More