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Whose General Election is this Anyway?

Whose general election is this anyway?
Tuesday 9 March. 6.45pm for 7pm - 9pm
Atrium bar, The Studio, Cannon St, Birmingham B2 5EP.
The 2010 general election campaign may not be the most inspiring even in recent memory, but that is no reason to leave it to the politicians and party machines to set the agenda for our political future. The election is an opportunity for us as the public to discuss and debate our own interests and priorities, and to begin to formulate a meaningful agenda for ourselves. By challenging prospective candidates to state their positions on the questions that matter to us, we can at least ensure that the election is not monopolised by issues dreamt up in focus groups with a view to tipping the electoral balance one way or the other in a few key marginal constituencies. Instead, we should gatecrash the party and insist on a serious public debate about the questions that are sidelined or obscured by the mainstream parties.

While the 2010 election is not going to return a government genuinely capable of enacting a new popular agenda, it can at least be a chance for us to begin to put such an agenda in place. Which issues are missing from the current election agenda, and how can we take them forward?

Dolan Cummings
Dolan Cummings is an Associate Fellow of the Institute of Ideas, having been research and editorial director from 2001 to 2010. He continues to edit the IoI's online review, Culture Wars, where he also writes about books, films and theatre. He developed the Round Table Rumbles theatre debates at the Edinburgh Fringe in 2001-2004 and at the National Theatre in London in 2005, and he continues to organise regular arts discussions through the Culture Wars Forum.

Dolan has edited several collections of essays including, The Changing Role of the Public Intellectual Routledge (2005) and Debating Humanism Societas (2006). He is also a member of the radical humanist Manifesto Club.

A yet to be confirmed speaker from the University of Birmingham will start the debate by responding to Dolan's ideas

Cost: £5 on the door (to cover costs)

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