Politics in Western Europe: An Introduction to the Politics of the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, Sweden, and the European Union

Politics in Western Europe: An Introduction to the Politics of the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, Sweden, and the European Union

Politics in Western Europe: An Introduction to the Politics of the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, Sweden, and the European Union

Politics in Western Europe: An Introduction to the Politics of the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, Sweden, and the European Union

Synopsis

Completely revising their work, Hancock's team of experts discuss the politics of the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Sweden and the European Union. In addition, a wholly new section on postcommunist Russia, emphasizing the personalities and achievements of Presidents Yeltsin and Putin, completes the comprehensive coverage of contemporary European politics. A common organization for each country section facilitates systematic comparison.

Excerpt

This new edition of Politics in Western Europe incorporates discussions of recent events that have partially transformed the European political landscape since the publication of the first edition. Among them are a succession of national elections, the fundamental transformation of the Italian party system, the continuing challenge of economic reconstruction and social integration in the reunified Germany, the ratification and implementation of the Treaty on European Union, and the expansion of the European Union from twelve to fifteen members.

In a rapidly changing political and economic world, Western Europe continues to command the attention of students, informed citizens, scholars, and other professionals. Democratic principles and the postwar economic performance of the West European nations helped inspire the dramatic events during the late I980s and early I990s that transformed the countries of Central and Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union into fledgling market economies and democratic political systems. Domestically, national politics have assumed new and, in some cases, unsettling dimensions in response to internationalization, increased electoral volatility, and an ever-evolving political agenda. Continued movement toward economic and political union among the members of the European Union underscores the EU's importance as an increasingly powerful actor in regional and global affairs.

The emergent "new Europe" encompasses both continuity and change. Democratic constitutional principles and institutional arrangements—well-established on the basis of historical experience in the United Kingdom, France, and Sweden and the product of postwar consensus in countries such as Germany and Italy—remain firmly entrenched as the basis of parliamentary government throughout Western Europe. Traditional political parties and organized interest groups continue to occupy center political stage. At the same time, resurgent social‐ political movements—ranging from the Greens on the non-Marxist left . . .

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