Beyond Right and Left

New politics and the culture wars


'original, courageous, realistic and fresh' Robert Manne, Professor, School of Politics, La Trobe University

Do Right and Left still mean anything in politics? Are environmental issues always 'left wing'? Is it only 'right wing' to worry about the family? In fact, these traditional connections have broken down, but what is taking their place?

In Australian politics today a new free market Right holds the ascendancy in ideas, while Labor and the Left struggle with a crisis of belief. David McKnight makes a compelling argument that the new Right has a radical agenda, not a conservative one. He shows how this drives some of the most vexed issues of our time: overconsumption, work-family balance, immigration and the environment.

McKnight points to the rise of a new politics based on moral values, and argues that the Left needs to rethink its fundamental ideas. He offers a positive political vision beyond Right and Left which he calls a 'new humanism', based on classic principles of freedom, compassion for others and the common good.

Provocative, original and incisive, Beyond Right and Left is certain to spark widespread debate.

'Subtle, incisive, courageous; bound to be a watershed in Australian progressive politics' Clive Hamilton, author of Growth Fetish

'David McKnight gives us the tools to work out where we stand—and what unites rather than divides us—as the struggle to defend our democracy begins in earnest.' Margo Kingston, author of Not Happy John

  • Allen & Unwin; September 2005
  • ISBN 9781741154856
  • Read online, or download in secure PDF or secure EPUB format
  • Title: Beyond Right and Left
  • Author: David McKnight
  • Imprint: Allen & Unwin