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The tone of British politics has shifted from the ideology-driven years of Conservatives Margaret Thatcher and John Major to the relatively ideology-free years of their Labour successors. The fabric of British politics has also shifted--from the institutional reforms of the 1980s and 1990s to the constitutional reforms of the late 1990s through the early years of the twenty-first century. In this highly readable text, American scholar Bruce Norton, who has lived in Britain since 1987, examines these shifts in British politics and offers a stimulating, balanced perspective on the changing nature of political leadership; electoral reforms and major trends in voting behavior; the evolving relations between central government and local governments and the newly devolved governments of Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland; the increasing impact of the European Union on British government and politics; and the emergence of the judiciary as a significant force in shaping public policy in twenty-first century Britain.

I like a lot of the background information - my students are not Brits and the fact that the book is written primarily for a US audience make it more accessible to my non-native speakers. However, in view of the changes in the UK since 2007 (Coalition, Supreme Court, failed AV referendum, possible Scottish independence and Lords reform) it is too out-of-date. I'd welcome a new edition.

Dr Manda Green
Langues étrangères appliquées, Lumière University, Lyon 2
July 20, 2012

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ISBN: 9780871879240
£48.99