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New Left Review I/50, July-August 1968

Perry Anderson

Components of the National Culture

A coherent and militant student movement has not yet emerged in England. But it may now be only a matter of time before it does. Britain is the last major industrialized country which has not produced one. The immediate priorities for any such movement are obvious: the fight against the authoritarianism of universities and colleges, alliance with the working-class and struggle against imperialism. These are the issues which are the natural focus of struggle for a mass student revolt. There is, however, another front which will have eventually to be opened. This is a direct attack on the reactionary and mystifying culture inculcated in universities and colleges, and which it is one of the fundamental purposes of British higher education to instil in students.

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Perry Anderson, ‘Components of the National Culture’, NLR I/50: £3

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