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Books Editorial

inventingthefuture.jpg Inventing the Future: Postcapitalism and a World Without Work

Nick Srnicek & Alex Williams, Verso

The Italian Marxist Antonio Gramsci once said that capitalist power was dependent on what he termed hegemony – the engineering of consent according to the dictates of one particular group. A hegemonic project builds a ‘common sense’ that installs the particular worldview of one group as the universal horizon of an entire society. Today, we’re living under the hegemony of neoliberalism. What this book – first published in 2015 and now reissued with a new afterword – proposes is that the left must abandon its ‘folk politics’, which the authors term as being all about immediacy, localism and horizontalism (ie fiddling around the edges of the structures that leave neoliberalism in place), to embrace modernity and an entirely new way of thinking about the future. This involves setting in motion counter-hegemonic ideas that embrace automation, and building the case for a basic citizen’s income. One chapter is sub-headed with a quote from Arthur C. Clarke: “The goal of the future is full unemployment”, and this book makes a compelling case for making that idea a reality.