A People’s History of Politics: Reading List

Thank you all for coming to the People’s PPE launch event!

Please find below a reading list, with some notes, recommended and inspired by our three guests.


A must-see conversation between our Owen Jones and Peter Oborne, recorded about a fortnight before our event. Topics include: Foreign policy, Dissident traditions, Jeremy Corbyn, and an emerging ‘soft apartheid’ in Britain.

Owen Jones – Reading List

‘The Establishment’ is central text for this topic: “Jones shows how, in claiming to work on our behalf, the people at the top are doing precisely the opposite. In fact, they represent the biggest challenge to our democracy today”.

Peter Oborne – Reading List

Both books provide a devastating account of the rise the ‘Political Class’, who serve themselves, rather than the public, at the cost of our democracy.

Peter has also authored a number of very important articles outlining issues raised in our discussion. They are as follows:

Peter has recommended three further texts for the reading list. The first two are related to one another, and deal with the notion of a ‘Cartel Party’ – a single party that governs the state,  even if there is an illusion of two or more prominent parties. These two texts are as follows:

Finally, the third text recommended by Peter Oborne outlines the British history of dissent against foreign policy. Peter Oborne has argued that Jeremy Corbyn, far from being a historical anomaly, continues this very long and proud British tradition:

Dr. Layli Uddin – Reading List

Dr. Layli’s talk covered the life and times of Abdul Hamid Khan Bhashani – otherwise known as the ‘Red Maulana’. He was the founding father of the Awami League, the current ruling party of Bangladesh. Though instrumental in mass mobilisation, anti-colonial resistance and winning elections for the Awami League, he never held any formal political positions.

Dr. Layli’s book on Maulana Bhashani is still to be published, though her work can be found here:

Interestingly, though Maulana Bhashani is the founding member of the current ruling party, and convened its first meeting, his legacy has been dropped from the National Curriculum of Bangladesh.

If you have any more recommendations, questions or comments – do leave a note in the comments section!

A People’s History of Politics: Reading List