Beyond Grievance

Rakib Ehsan

Beyond Grievance highlights the growing tensions between the liberal cosmopolitanism which defines much of the British political Left, and the patriotic faith-based conservatism that runs deep in many of Britain’s ethnic-minority communities. With American-style racial identity politics taking root in the UK, the book argues that many liberal-leftists are disregarding the attachments to the traditional triad of faith, family and flag in historically Labour-voting, ethnic-minority communities.

Rakib Ehsan argues that Britain needs a robust civic patriotism which understands that a stable family unit is the finest form of social security known to humankind; a cultural arrangement which appreciates that faith is a vital source of strength and optimism across a diversity of communities. Providing a much-needed corrective to the toxic mixture of tribal identity politics and radical cultural liberalism on the modern British Left, the book presents the case for an inclusive ‘social-justice traditionalism’ rooted in family, security, and equality of opportunity.


ISBN: 9781800751040

Published: June 15, 2023


ISBN: 9781800751057

Published: June 15, 2023


Reviews for Beyond Grievance

‘When it comes to the intensifying national debates around identity politics, tribalism and social solidarity, Rakib Ehsan’s is a compelling voice. Unafraid to ruffle the feathers of self-declared liberals and progressives, he speaks and writes with fluency, passion and – most crucially – a searing honesty. This book deserves the widest attention’ – Paul Embery, author of Despised: Why the Modern Left Loathes the Working Class

‘Beyond Grievance is a heartfelt and packed-with-stats plea to the Left to abandon victimhood indulgence and instead celebrate the varied and extraordinary triumphs of different ethnic minority groups and individuals. A wake-up call for all of us’ – Katharine Birbalsingh, headteacher of the Michaela School

‘Faith, family and flag are hugely important to many Black and Asian Britons. Rakib Ehsan’s insightful book busts the many myths that the liberal left likes to tell about Britain’s diversity and shows that there is strength in the traditional values of our ethnic minority communities’ – Lord Maurice Glasman, author of Blue Labour

‘Rakib Ehsan is one of the most uninhibited and effective young voices speaking up for the socially conservative left. The fact that he does so as a proud ethnic-minority Briton finding common cause with the country’s left-behind, post-industrial communities make him a challenging figure for both main political parties. On ground prepared by Blue Labour and Red Toryism, Ehsan could be helping to forge an important new coalition. This book is its manifesto’ – David Goodhart, author of The Road to Somewhere

‘For too long, ethnic-minority Britons have been stereotyped as a poor, downtrodden and marginalised singular group. Rakib Ehsan’s refreshing and much-needed book challenges this lazy narrative, instead shedding light on the patriotic, optimistic and hard-working ethos that runs through so many ethnic minority communities’ – Inaya Folarin Iman, founder of the Equiano Project

‘Rakib Ehsan takes the Left on a journey, sometimes at turbo-speed. We see a movement which often cohered around the Labour Party really losing its way. The car crash happens as it deserts its own traditional working class for the mad race politics of America. Britain’s ethnic minorities hold up a mirror to the soul of the Left who have forgotten aspiration, faith, the family, patriotism and the rule of law’ – Lord Tony Sewell, educationalist and former Chair of the Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities.

‘Rakib Ehsan makes a compelling case for the modern British left to reject identitarian politics and refrain from framing every issue around race. Instead, Ehsan importantly argues that more focus should be placed on a social policy that has families at the heart of it. This is a sensible starting point for modern-day Britain’ – Wasiq Wasiq, co-founder of Muslims Against Antisemitism


Rakib Ehsan

Dr Rakib Ehsan is a research analyst and writer who specialises in matters of social cohesion, race relations and public security. As well as previously working as a senior data analyst at the Centre for Social Justice, his research has been published by think-tanks such as the Henry Jackson Society, Policy Exchange, ResPublica, the Runnymede Trust and the Intergenerational Foundation.

Rakib has written for publications including The Telegraph, the Daily Mail, the Independent, Sp!ked, and UnHerd. He is a regular TV and radio commentator including on the BBC, Sky News and LBC. He was born in west London and raised in Luton by a strong, community-minded family of Bangladeshi origin and is a committed trade unionist.