There is such a thing as society, and it is very real and important…

Hutts Strange World

Margaret Thatcher

Margaret Thatcher – a most misguided individual indeed.

OPINION: Across the Anglo-American world in the 1980s, including New Zealand, neo-liberal doctrines went viral.

In 1987 Margaret Thatcher, then Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, gave a speech in which she declared, “There is no such thing as society. There are individual men and women, and there are families.”

Unfortunately, however, she was mistaken. There is such a thing as society. Since time immemorial, human beings have worked together in groups beyond the individual and families to ensure their well-being and survival. The emergence of language, and kinship, the nation state and other forms of social organisation are key markers in the history of our species. Homo sapiens is above all, a social animal.

In a globalised world, if we are to survive and prosper, human beings have to learn to work together in increasingly complex and sophisticated ways. This requires…

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