The role of class in electoral alignments is not a uniform fact of modern politics. There are countries where the basic division between parties cuts completely across class lines, and even in Britain class effects differ markedly from area to area. In the pages that follow we shall explore some of these variations for what they can tell us about processes by which class membership is converted into party support. We shall find in these processes a clue to a profound, if unexpectedly paradoxical, continuity in electoral change, the tendency of electoral tides to run with equal strength in all parts of Britain.
KeywordsMiddle Class Class Composition Total Vote Safe Seat Party Support
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- 1.For an extended discussion of this difference between the two countries see D. E. Stokes, ‘Parties and the Nationalization of Electoral Forces’, in The American Party Systems, W. N. Chambers and W. D. Burnham, eds., New York, 1968, pp. 182–202.Google Scholar
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