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Left of Europe


Untangling the Brexit question with a panel of activists and leftists from around the United Kingdom

Last week, on October 28, Boris Johnson—the British prime minister who said he would “rather be dead in a ditch” than request another Brexit extension from the European Union—requested and received such an extension from the European Union, making this the third time that Brexit has been delayed since the June 2016 referendum. In anticipation of the deadline, the Harper’s Podcast convened four experts and participants in U.K. politics—David Renton, James Foley, Cat Boyd, and Richard Seymour—to discuss the complex political landscape of Brexit, its possible implications for different sectors of the population, and the hope that may lie in the situation’s vast and continuing uncertainties.

This forum is an extension of a conversation between socialist writer Ashley Smith and University of Glasgow professor Neil Davidson that was published in New Politics. An excerpt from that interview was reprinted in the October issue of Harper’s Magazine. The episode was co-moderated by Smith and Harper’s web editor Violet Lucca.

Cat Boyd is a trade-union organizer in Glasgow.

James Foley is a postdoctoral researcher at Glasgow Caledonian University and the author of a forthcoming book on Scottish independence, which will be published by Verso in 2020.

David Renton is a barrister, historian, and long-standing anti-fascist activist.

Richard Seymour is a founding editor of Salvage magazine and author of The Twittering Machine. His writings can be read on Patreon.

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