Michael Calderbank


Michael Calderbank is a member of Red Pepper's editorial collective. He is also a parliamentary researcher for a group of trade unions.




How likely is a Labour Party split? August 2016

Michael Calderbank asks whether Labour's warring factions can ever be brought back together in a united party

Awakening from a nightmare: hope in an Out vote June 2016

Michael Calderbank forsees a bright future for the left in the event of an Out vote in the referendum

Video debate: The EU referendum – should the left vote in or out? May 2016

Marina Prentoulis and Luke Cooper (for in) debate Hannah Sell and Michael Calderbank (for out) in this episode of The Wedge, produced in collaboration with Red Pepper

Local elections in England: Reasons to be cheerful May 2016

Labour's results are better than you'd know from the pre-prepared despair by the media and some internal critics, writes Michael Calderbank

Hope Without Optimism April 2016

Hope Without Optimism, by Terry Eagleton, reviewed by Michael Calderbank

Going into Labour February 2016

You’ve joined the Labour Party – now how can you make your voice heard in its structures? Let Michael Calderbank guide you

After Corbyn’s victory: time for a new kind of politics September 2015

Jeremy Corbyn and his supporters now face the huge task of opening up the Labour Party and putting members genuinely in control. How can they do it? Michael Calderbank gives some ideas

Kill the Tory Trade Union Bill! September 2015

Michael Calderbank calls on Red Pepper readers to attend the 14 September protest to #killthebill

How Labour lost the 1992 election: an alternative to the ‘official wisdom’ August 2015

Michael Calderbank revisits Defeat from the Jaws of Victory, by Mike Marqusee and Richard Heffernan, first published 1992

Editorial: Triumph over disaster August 2015

Whatever the outcome of the Jeremy Corbyn campaign, it has shown that anti-austerity arguments have a wide resonance, writes Michael Calderbank

It’s Corbynmania! Thousands rally for Jeremy Corbyn August 2015

Michael Calderbank reports from the central London rally for Jeremy Corbyn

Jeremy Corbyn for leader! Write to your MP June 2015

Michael Calderbank asks you to help get Jeremy onto the ballot paper for Labour leader

‘Don’t mourn, organise’ – OK, but how? May 2015

The left must re-think its strategy and methods of organisation after the election, writes Michael Calderbank – not just throw ourselves back into the same schemes that aren't working

Editorial: Reinventing politics April 2015

Not even the most favourable electoral outcome is likely to deliver what is needed, writes Michael Calderbank

Editorial: Unshrinking the offer August 2014

Michael Calderbank says the ambition and imagination that fuelled 1970s radicalism needs to be reclaimed and renewed, not rejected

The Failed Experiment June 2014

The Failed Experiment, by Andrew Fisher, reviewed by Michael Calderbank

Shelagh Delaney and the drama of everyday life April 2014

Michael Calderbank reconsiders the context of Salford playwright Shelagh Delaney’s breakthrough as the National Theatre stages a revival of her debut A Taste of Honey

Marx’s Concept of the Alternative to Capitalism February 2014

Marx’s Concept of the Alternative to Capitalism, by Peter Hudis, reviewed by Michael Calderbank

Editorial: Winter chill, political spring December 2013

A two-year price freeze on energy bills, while welcome, is hardly sufficient, writes Michael Calderbank

Resisting fascism is not a crime September 2013

Defend Savas Michael-Matsas and Constantinos Moutzouris

After Woolwich – Stand together against the politics of hate May 2013

Michael Calderbank says nothing excuses the Woolwich killing - but the hands of our political classes are no less besmirched with blood

Furthering the fightback April 2013

The question of what new political formation is possible or necessary must always begin from the daily experience and needs of working class communities, writes Michael Calderbank

We can’t wish a new left party into existence March 2013

Michael Calderbank offers an alternative view of Ken Loach’s appeal to discuss a new party

Scouse: a class accent February 2013

Michael Calderbank speaks to Tony Crowley, author of Scouse: A Social and Cultural History

Labour and the cuts: beyond the ‘dented shield’ January 2013

The scale of coalition cuts means the very future of local public services is in jeopardy. Michael Calderbank asks whether Labour councillors can do more than offer verbal protest and practical acquiescence

Radicals at the table – Natalie Bennett interview December 2012

Natalie Bennett, the new Green Party leader, speaks to Andrew Bowman and Michael Calderbank

One Nation, or, Ed Miliband’s Utopia October 2012

Why are Labour now claiming to speak in the "one nation" tradition of 19th Century Tory PM Benjamin Disraeli? Michael Calderbank reflects

Shedcasting in Surbiton September 2012

Michael Calderbank visits the suburban garden of radio broadcaster and DJ Mark Coles, an unlikely location for an internet-based radio show

Northern soul: Socialism with a Northern Accent September 2012

Socialism with a Northern Accent, by Paul Salveson. reviewed by Michael Calderbank

Atos sponsors the Paralympics? It’s enough to make you scream August 2012

The role played by disabled groups, far from being one of passive victims, is exemplary for collective resistance, writes Michael Calderbank

What if loyalty hadn’t drained Ken of his maverick energy? May 2012

Michael Calderbank examines the reasons behind Ken Livingstone's defeat in the London mayoral elections

Audio: May elections – Jenny Jones interview April 2012

Jenny Jones, the Green Party candidate for London mayor, speaks to Red Pepper's Tim Hunt and Michael Calderbank

Neither Hattersley nor Miliband: why today’s left must ‘re-think’ differently February 2012

Does Labour Old or New have what it takes to ‘re-think’ the project of social democracy? asks Michael Calderbank

Bashing the fash January 2012

An extended interview with Red Action activists on how they fought the fascists - literally

Pensions: Keep united and step up the fight January 2012

Michael Calderbank reports from PCS Left Unity's organising conference on the pensions fight.

Police and the student protests November 2011

Overkill or deliberate misinformation? Either way it looks they are starting to worry...

Tribune RIP? October 2011

Michael Calderbank on the threat to a long-standing fixture of British left publishing

Explanation not excuses October 2011

It’s not just the looters that need to be brought to justice, writes Michael Calderbank

In the revolutionary warm-stream September 2011

Michael Calderbank reviews Magical Marxism: subversive politics and the Imagination, by Andy Merrifield

Reconstructing Marx July 2011

Michael Calderbank reviews Why Marx was Right by Terry Eagleton

The ladder of escape June 2011

Michael Calderbank considers utopian dreaming and political engagement in the Joan Miró exhibition at Tate Modern

Back to ‘normal’? April 2011

Extraordinary displays of resistance are only the beginning, says Michael Calderbank

‘Don’t blame us, guv!’ Can councillors resist the cuts? February 2011

Do councillors have no choice but to deliver the cuts hammer blow, or can they fight back? Michael Calderbank investigates

Netroots UK: New wine into old bottles? January 2011

Michael Calderbank on the challenges ahead for the online left.

A new kind of angry brigade August 2010

The coalition could be making a massive mistake if it believes that resistance will be confined to an isolated rump of beleaguered union activists and 'usual suspect' protesters, writes Michael Calderbank

Fierce urgency July 2010

Beyond the Tipping Point? Director: Stefan Skrimshire ‘That it goes on like this is the catastrophe,’ the German critic Walter Benjamin once wrote, a comment all the more prescient given that our present lifestyles threaten to change the climate beyond the point of reversability. This film is not about the climate science behind the suggestion […]

After the deluge June 2010

With BNP councillors wiped out on Barking council, Michael Calderbank considers the local Labour party's chances of keeping them out for good

Not flocks or herds January 2010

‘To inherit a government,’ wrote Tom Paine in Rights of Man, ‘is to inherit the people, as if they were flocks and herds.’ Paine was referring to the evils of hereditary succession, but the remark seems apt with David Cameron expecting to be handed power by default. Our political system means that – whichever party […]

The inner Other December 2009

Michael Calderbank reviews Angels of Anarchy, a major exhibition of women surrealists at Manchester City Art Gallery

Editorial: A new political space August 2009

Michael Calderbank, one of Red Pepper's new co-editors, on the need for greater democracy and accountability






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