College students seek socialist ideas

Last December I was invited to speak to some college politics students. In my introduction I made points on socialism, Marxism, what the Socialist Party stands for, our campaigns, my personal reasons for joining the party and internationalism.

Frankie Langeland, Cambridge Socialist Party

Questions from the floor followed. Students were obviously keen as the session was in the lunch break and around 70 attended voluntarily!

Expecting quite basic questions I was taken aback when they raised the issue of China, its economy and is it capitalist? They also asked about other left groups, socialism and democracy, and why we call for a new workers’ party if we are already in a revolutionary party.

No one said ‘socialism doesn’t work’ and the discussion focused on how a socialist society would actually work. They had been reading up on the web. I don’t know if they were representative of what most young people in Britain think as these students choose to study politics.

They seemed more interested in our ideas than our campaigns, but I felt that was linked to the way they have been taught politics.

They seemed keen to look into it further and bought 13 copies of The Socialist, a manifesto for socialism and a manifesto for the campaign for a new workers’ party.