2014 will be the Year of Identity, argues Sunder Katwala, director of British Future, in his Ralph Miliband memorial lecture at the London School of Economics. Addressing the theme ‘Is there a progressive case for national identity?’, Katwala looked at how identity will help to shape key choices about the future of the United Kingdom, Britain’s place in Europe, identity and immigration. Below is the full text of his lecture.
Tag Archive for integration
Englishness is on the rise. On Wednesday 20th November a wide range of people came together to debate this question in Manchester as part of the Festival of Englishness, co-hosted by British Future, IPPR and the Social Action and Research Foundation. Listen to what various speakers at the event had to say.
The public is often portrayed as opposed to migration, and opinion polls do show it is a key issue for voters. But new research by NIESR, published today, finds that members of the public who work with migrants recognise the need for skilled migration. They also willingly acknowledge that they have benefited, writes Dr Heather Rolfe.
The leader of the English Defence League (EDL), Tommy Robinson, has announced that he is leaving the organisation, as is EDL co-founder Kevin Carroll. British Future director Sunder Katwala has the following response to the resignations.
As a single white man in my twenties, going to see a play about four mothers dealing with their children, relationships and mixed race families was not something I thought I was going to relate to. But thanks to a healthy injection of humour and some sharp social commentary about the UK in general, Adult Supervision had myself and everyone else in the audience engrossed and laughing from start to finish, writes Douglas Jefferson.
Are you a Grumpy Nostalgic or part of team Jam and Jerusalem? Are you a Northern Soul or a Post-National Cosmopolitan? In an article in the Observer, Sunder Katwala outlines the main tribes that reflect our attitudes towards Modern Britain. They divide along various lines according to criteria such as class, place and age, but significantly unite at other points. It is this unity which says a lot about the country today and which should be built upon, writes Katwala.
How to reach new groups without losing support from the core was a key theme raised on Monday 30th September when British Future and ConservativeHome hosted a fringe event at the Conservative Party Conference entitled “Future majority: how can the Tories win in a changing Britain?”
On 20th September the late Rev Dr. Oliver Lyseight was awarded a blue plaque by the Wolverhampton Civic & Historical Society in what marks an important chapter in the history of both Wolverhampton and of integration in the UK.
On Monday 23rd September, British Future took part in an event at the Labour Party conference entitled What's the answer to populism? Chaired by British Future director Sunder Katwala, guest speakers Zoe Williams from the Guardian, Sadiq Khan MP, David Lammy MP and Dr Evan Harris presented a plethora of views on the question.
Retired Wimbledon footballer Vinnie Jones, star of Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, has spoken out about England being “past its sell-by date.” In a Radio Times interview, Vinnie says that he would not return to Britain from his current home in Los Angeles as immigration has made the country “unrecognisable”. Steve Ballinger sends him a postcard from England.
Immigration is often among the most heated of public debates. Lord Ashcroft’s new report captures why immigration is such a challenging public issue, for governments of any party, and offers clues too as to how to engage the public constructively in the choices Britain makes about immigration, writes Sunder Katwala.
One positive story to come out of the tragedy of Woolwich in May took place at the East London mosque, in Tower Hamlets, when leaders of the Christian, Jewish and Buddhist faiths joined approximately 6,000 Muslims for Friday prayers. It was a shining example of interfaith, but it was not unique. Rather examples of interfaith have been becoming more visible and frequent in the UK over the past decade. Will they foster genuine dialogue and counter prejudice, asks Jemimah Steinfeld.
With the recent staging of Yellow Face at London's Park Theatre this summer, a spotlight was cast on the Chinese community in the UK. Yet beyond that the Chinese community remains largely hidden from our public conversation, with opinion formers talking of it as the "silent" community. Is that a sign of successful integration or of problems that go under the radar, asks Jemimah Steinfeld.
In a letter to The Times, nearly 100 individuals and organisations have called Windrush Day an opportunity to give thanks for the positive contribution to Britain of modern immigrations and integration. Signatories include politicians from each of the main parties and both Houses of Parliament, faith groups, academics, business leaders, trade unions and cultural figures such as authors Zadie Smith and Malorie Blackman.
The MV Empire Windrush started its life as a vehicle for the Nazi Party and ended its life under the control of the Allied forces, transporting 493 passengers from Jamaica to the UK, thus transforming it into a symbol of multiculturalism and tolerance. Patrick Vernon OBE, founder of 100 Great Black Britons, was the first to call for a national celebration of Windrush Day. Here Vernon explains why it matters.
Bradford City's proud fans did not want to leave Wembley, almost now their adopted second home, after they clinched promotion with a 3-0 victory over Northampton Town in the play-off final, providing a celebratory finale to the most remarkable season in this venerable football club's 110-year history, writes Sunder Katwala.
Over the past year, crime in general has fallen in Hammersmith & Fulham, but race and religious hate crime has risen, with the Muslim population particularly affected. There are several reasons behind this discrepancy, writes Phil Cooper of Hammersmith and Fulham Refugee Forum (HFRF).