Ron Gray Conference 2021: Identity Politics and Culture Wars

It has become increasingly apparent in both the USA and the UK that political divisions are moving away from being primarily based on economic and class divisions towards a politics reflecting society’s cultural divisions. The first obvious manifestation of this was the Feminist movement, followed by that for Gay rights.

Of late there has been an increasing fragmentation of cultural groups into ever smaller identities each claiming a unique status. This process has been accelerated by migration and by the emergence of issues relating to gender identification (Facebook includes more than 50 different gender identities). Such movements are related to the culture wars in the Anglosphere, the election of Trump in the USA and the outcome of the EU referendum.

The questions that arise, which the Conference will try to address, include:

  • Have we moved from a politics of redistribution to one of recognition?
  • Is this a desirable development, or does it serve to divide rather than unite?
  • How is freedom of speech affected, and to what extent do groups have the right to restrict such freedom in a constitutionally unprotected state such as the UK?
  • How do we ensure the reliability of historical narratives?

Event information


01 Jan 1970