This essay reviews four recent volumes on British politics: two single-authored books on the problems of representative democracy and on « who governs Britain », and two edited books on the impact of the coalition government and on the 2015 general election. Through some of their insights, we draw attention to the emergence of three tensions – further exacerbated by the 2016 EU referendum – that have come to affect British democracy: a « sovereignty » tension between representative and direct democracy, a « territorial » tension among the constituent countries of the United Kingdom, and a « party-organisational » tension. After locating the British case in a comparative European framework, we focus on the challenges to representation and the Westminster model; the increased assertiveness of citizens and the changed answers to the « who governs? » question ; the dynamics of prime-ministerial power during and after the coalition; and « valence » politics in the electoral arena as opposed to the referendum one. We end by drawing conclusions on the deep-seated nature of the tensions and on the uncertainties surrounding the future of British democracy.

The multiple tensions of British democracy / GIANFRANCO BALDINI. - In: REVUE INTERNATIONALE DE POLITIQUE COMPAREE. - ISSN 1370-0731. - STAMPA. - 24:1(In stampa/Attività in corso), pp. 67-82.

The multiple tensions of British democracy

GIANFRANCO BALDINI
In corso di stampa

Abstract

This essay reviews four recent volumes on British politics: two single-authored books on the problems of representative democracy and on « who governs Britain », and two edited books on the impact of the coalition government and on the 2015 general election. Through some of their insights, we draw attention to the emergence of three tensions – further exacerbated by the 2016 EU referendum – that have come to affect British democracy: a « sovereignty » tension between representative and direct democracy, a « territorial » tension among the constituent countries of the United Kingdom, and a « party-organisational » tension. After locating the British case in a comparative European framework, we focus on the challenges to representation and the Westminster model; the increased assertiveness of citizens and the changed answers to the « who governs? » question ; the dynamics of prime-ministerial power during and after the coalition; and « valence » politics in the electoral arena as opposed to the referendum one. We end by drawing conclusions on the deep-seated nature of the tensions and on the uncertainties surrounding the future of British democracy.
In corso di stampa
The multiple tensions of British democracy / GIANFRANCO BALDINI. - In: REVUE INTERNATIONALE DE POLITIQUE COMPAREE. - ISSN 1370-0731. - STAMPA. - 24:1(In stampa/Attività in corso), pp. 67-82.
GIANFRANCO BALDINI
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11585/629017
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