This book tackles one of the most pressing issues currently facing centre-left governments: social inequality. At a time when the traditional mechanisms of social cohesion have been undermined by greater individualism, the globalization of production, and the fragmentation of social life, the challenges posed by inequality are more pronounced than ever before. As communities and cultures become more complex, social solidarity and social justice can increasingly seem like impossible ideals. Bringing together original contributions from globally renowned thinkers such as Gosta Esping-Andersen, Saskia Sassen, Ulrich Beck and Anthony Giddens, as well as senior New Labour figures, the book offers a coherent account of the dynamic and multi-faceted nature of contemporary inequality, and lays out how these inequalities can be countered. Drawing on a wide range of evidence, and the experiences of governments worldwide, it proposes a fresh agenda for social change. The Editors propose a 'new egalitarianism' - an approach to equality consistent with the demands of a post-modern economy and society.
The book shows that there is a viable future for a left-of-centre politics anchored in egalitarian values, but that it requires a break with some core assumptions of the past. The New Egalitarianism will be essential reading for anyone concerned about social inequality, and the future of democratic politics.