Who Are We Now? A talk by Jason Cowley, Editor of the New Statesman
Based on his book of the same name, Jason Cowley, editor-in-chief of the New Statesman, examines contemporary England through a handful of the key news stories from recent times to reveal what they tell us about the state of the nation and to answer the question: Who Are We Now?
From the election of Tony Blair’s New Labour government to the aftermath of the Covid pandemic, the book investigates how England has changed and how those changes have affected us. Cowley weaves together the seemingly disparate stories of the Chinese cockle-pickers who drowned in Morecambe Bay, the Lancashire woman who took on Gordon Brown, the pensioner who campaigned against the closure of her GP’s surgery and Gareth Southgate’s transformation of English football culture. And in doing so, Cowley shows the common threads that unite them, whether it is attitudes to class, nation, identity, belonging, immigration, or religion.
Through these vivid and often moving stories, Cowley offers a clear and compassionate analysis of how and why England became so divided and the United Kingdom so fragmented, and how we got to this cultural and political crossroads. Most importantly, he also shows us the many ways in which there is genuine hope for the future.
Introduced by Rob Elkington
About the speaker:
Jason Cowley is an award-winning journalist, magazine editor and writer. He has been widely credited with transforming the fortunes of the New Statesman, both as a magazine and website. In 2020 he was voted Editor of the Year (politics and current affairs) for the fourth time at the British Society of Magazine Editors awards.