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Can anything be done to break through the gridlock of partisan politics in the United States and elsewhere? Is partisanship necessarily a problem? This series of articles explores the theory and practice of "trans-partisan" politics, which aim to find common ground between opposing ideologies as a basis for moving forward.

The American that America doesn't want to know

For Max—poor, white, male and vocal—politics were a projection of the personal.

The dangers of political sainthood

If our aim is to learn from individuals who somehow rise above their time, we should treat them more like ordinary human beings.

When will there be harmony?

‘White trash,’ ‘dumbass libtard,’ ‘right-wing fuckhead:’ have we all gone mad?  

Could Facebook provide an antidote to political polarization?

Is it so hard to listen and speak respectfully to people you disagree with?

Collaborating with the enemy

At a time of increasing polarization, how can we work with people we may not like, trust, or agree with?

Desmond Tutu was right

As the UK General Election campaign heats up, who says politics and religion don’t mix?

From the politics of division to the politics of humanity

We must not give up on revolutionary optimism. It may get us some important concessions from neo-liberalism—and possibly much, much more.

Escaping from the echo-chambers of politics

How can people who spend their lives discussing politics sometimes be so out of touch? Español

Scorn wars: rural white people and us

What could end the cycle of mutual ignorance, resentment, and anger in politics? 

Why we should embrace the good, the bad and the ugly

Since democracy is a form of dependency on the will of others, we need to work a lot harder to overcome our narcissism and belief that we know best.

How democracy vouchers could combat big money in politics

Across the USA, voters are pushing for public-matching systems to replace the influence of wealthy bankrollers in elections.

Why politics needs more in-betweeners

Human psychology makes people suspicious of opposing perspectives, but seeing both sides of an argument is not a weakness. 

How can we make our politics reflect what’s best in us and not what’s worst?

Both inner and outer change are essential for political transformation.

If you want change, learn when to argue and when to stop

Getting stuck in the wrong fights can eat up energy—so learn to use it wisely.

Transformative democracy: bringing the outside world in

Is there hope for a new politics in European institutions? One insider-outsider says yes.

Why we need young people to create the new politics

Activism from young people against the callous actions of the establishment is growing, despite the growing pressures on their time and money just to survive.

They cut, we bleed: activists are fighting cuts to domestic violence services

Intimate partner violence kills two women a week, while around the UK refuges are forced to close. Sisters Uncut have had enough.

Can the Working Families Party succeed in America?

The United States is shifting to the left. What happens next?

Why revolution is no longer possible

The tough logic of capitalism prevails even at the heart of the sharing economy. As nice as it may be to share, no one gives away anything for free.

Can non-Western democracy help to foster political transformation?

Democratic renewal is urgently needed everywhere, and in that process all societies can learn from each other.

All you need is a politics of love

After the US Supreme Court marriage equality ruling, campaigners chanted “love has won” and “#lovewins” was a Twitter trend. What would a broader politics of love look like?

Beyond electoral scapegoating: now is the time to love, learn and listen

Have faith in each other. It will be richly rewarded. True democracy cannot be built on anything else.

If you care about politics, don't vote

“Vote!” urge the party politics fans, waving their General Election sign-up sheets. But voting is the least effective way to create change.

Should compassion be an election issue?

Compassion isn’t the property of Labour or the Conservatives, but when both parties embrace it does it mean anything at all?

These American cities are fighting for control over electricity and the internet

State politicians are governed by check-writers in the energy and telecommunications businesses, but cities are pushing back.

The people’s state of the union: re-imagining U.S. politics

Could the U.S. President’s annual address be reconfigured as a playful, reflective and connective civic ritual? Here’s how.

The political emotions of Martha Nussbaum

Why does love matter for democracy? A conversation with one of the world’s leading philosophers. 

Why the right keeps winning and the left keeps losing

What the left needs is an account of how the suffering we experience in our personal lives stems from capitalist values, and to replace this system with one built on values of love and caring.

American politics: beyond angels and demons

In celebration of July 4, Independence Day in the United States, Transformation asks what lies in store for democracy in America? 

When is civil society a force for social transformation?

There are more civil society organizations in the world today than at any other time in history, so why isn't their impact growing? 

The Labour Party's real challenge is finding a radical voice

Will the UK Labour Party ever really, vocally resist Conservative policies? They should be engaging young voters on global social inequality.

Silence = death: Sarah Schulman on ACT UP, the forgotten resistance to the AIDS crisis

When the AIDS activist movement ACT UP was formed in New York in 1987, 50 per cent of Americans wanted people with AIDS quarantined, while 15 per cent favoured tattoos. An interview with Sarah Schulman on her film United In Anger: A History of ACT UP. 

The world should be watching India’s coup of common people

Can the new Aam Aadmi party transform Indian democracy? Or will high expectations be dissipated as the party's promises are challenged and its weaknesses are tested? Either way, other movements for social and political change should take heed.

Who’s afraid of partisan politics?

Bi-partisan deal-making is often celebrated as progress, but is it any basis for transforming politics in America? This is the final article in our series on trans-partisan politics.

A gay Marxist meets the Tea Party in California

Is the fabled “center-ground” of politics worth striving for if the real beneficiary is crony capitalism? This is the fifth piece in our series on trans-partisan politics.

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