Contemporary Britain: A Survey with Texts

By John Oakland | Go to book overview

Chapter 5

Constitutional reform
The British Constitution121
1 ‘Reclaiming Britain’s constitution…’, The Economist121
2 ‘Democracy’s second age’, 124
Tony Blair
Devolution128
3 ‘A house devolved against itself, Lord Mackay of Clashfern 129
4 ‘Devolution is not a revolution’, Lord Irvine of Lairg 131
5 ‘Weakening the ties of a United Kingdom’, The Daily Mail134
6 ‘Blair’s brave new Britain is a catastrophe’, 134
David Davis
7 ‘A federal Britain’, The Economist137
The House of Lords139
8 ‘True peers are made not born’, 139
Jack Straw
9 ‘The secret enemies of democracy’, 141
Ivor Richard
10 ‘This House is built on solid ground’, 144
Geoffrey Howe
Civil liberties146
11 ‘Why Britain needs a Bill of Rights’, The Economist147
12 ‘Need to know’, The Times150
Exercises 151
Further reading 152
Notes 152

Public opinion polls suggest that constitutional reform in Britain does not rank high on the list of most people’s personal concerns about the country. But, nevertheless, constitutional issues continue to play a significant part in British life and could increasingly and directly affect greater numbers of citizens. This chapter is concerned with recent significant reform processes initiated by the Labour government. It focuses on devolution (a degree of self-government for Scotland, Wales

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Contemporary Britain: A Survey with Texts
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Preface xi
  • Acknowledgements xiii
  • Chapter 1 - Contemporary Britain: the Context 1
  • Chapter 2 - Images of Britain 29
  • Chapter 3 - National Identities 60
  • Chapter 4 - Political Ideologies 90
  • Chapter 5 - Constitutional Reform 119
  • Chapter 6 - Britain and the World 154
  • Chapter 7 - Central Social Institutions 184
  • Further Reading 215
  • Chapter 8 - Social Behaviour and ‘moral Panics’ 216
  • Index 251
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