Grand political ideals seemed in the later stages of the 20th century to have been replaced by a pragmatic political culture of effective management. Now it seems idealism is back in full cry. Whether in the form of tribal nationalism, radical socialism, or environmental activism, the goals and ideals of politics are once again centre stage.
Should we reject this return to idealism as a vehicle for dangerous fantasies, and a warning sign of future turmoil, conflict and human misery? Or is idealism central and necessary to politics? And the shift back to idealism a sign of hope and a necessary antidote to a bland politics that served no one other than the ruling elite?
Leading public intellectual and author of The Tyranny of Merit: What's Become of the Common Good?, Michael Sandel, economist and voice of the left Grace Blakeley, and former Conservative leadership candidate Rory Stewart discuss the case for ideological politics.