Who would be against the people?

There’s a profound scepticism running through Corbynism: A Critical Approach concerning the people and its role within Corbynism. Their concern is that a prevailing sense of socialism as natural, what people do when left to their own devices, constructs them as “inherently moral and naturally good beings, and ‘the people’ as a whole a unified, self-sufficient, organic community” (loc 3030). Drawing on G.M. Tamás, they link this to   Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s construct of the people “as a closed and undivided moral and cultural entity, wholly separate and opposed to the ‘society’ that surrounds and degrades it” (loc 3045). If I understand them correctly, the concern of the authors is that such a people, or rather the movement possessed by a sense of acting on behalf of such a lofty construction, lacks the capacity to question itself or doubt its purposes. In its political enthusiasm to liberate the people, it may open up much else which it lacks the capacity to even recognise, let alone to put back in the box.

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