Blue Labour or the Political History Blues

  • Lawrence Black


This article discusses the state of labour history and political history in Britain. Despite a continuing and sizeable output, it argues the former is very close to deserving an obituary, not unconnected to something of a methodolological malaise in the latter. Political history is not unhealthy, but out of fashion. Paradoxically, debate about history within the Labour party has been rife. Not only in its recent "crisis," but in the Blue Labour Project from 2010 that sought to rethink Labour's past, policy and vision after Blair. It explores Blue Labour through thinkers like Stears, Glasman and the journal Renewal. The gaps between current historical practice and its uses in Labour politics are revealing for both.