Beyond Left and Right: The End of an Old Order?
This chapter outlines the theoretical frameworks that have been employed to understand political competition in Europe. I explain how theorists have defined dimensions of political competition, starting with a critical evaluation of “left” and “right”. I go on to explore how scholars have recently proposed that politics in Europe is “two-dimensional”, defined by one economic left–right dimension and one cultural dimension. I also examine how these dimensions may be underpinned by social structure, identify the notion of societal cleavages proposed by Lipset and Rokkan (1967), and highlight recent work that suggests that globalisation may be forming the basis for a new cleavage. I finally explore how cleavage structures and political competition have evolved in Britain, pointing to the growing relevance of the cultural dimension of political competition and explaining how scholars of British politics have sought to explain recent changes in patterns of political competition.
KeywordsIdeological dimensions Cleavages Left Right TAN/GAL
- Anwar, M., Roach, P., & Sondhi, R. (2000). Introduction. In M. Anwar, P. Roach, & R. Sondhi (Eds.), From Legislation to Integration? Race Relations in Britain. Basingstoke and London: Macmillan.Google Scholar
- Beramendi, P., Häusermann, S., Kitschelt, H., & Kriesi, H. (2015). Introduction: The Politics of Advanced Capitalism. In P. Beramendi, S. Häusermann, H. Kitschelt, & H. Kriesi (Eds.), The Politics of Advanced Capitalism (pp. 1–64). New York: Cambridge University Press. Google Scholar
- Buckle, S. (2015). The Way Out: A History of Homosexuality in Modern Britain. London and New York: IB Tauris. Google Scholar
- Ford, R., & Goodwin, M. J. (2014). Revolt on the Right: Explaining Support for the Radical Right in Britain. Abingdon and New York: Routledge. Google Scholar
- Goodhart, D. (2017). The Road to Somewhere: The Populist Revolt and the Future of Politics. London: Hurst.Google Scholar
- Häusermann, S., & Kriesi, H. (2015). What Do Voters Want? Dimensions and Configurations in Individual-Level Preferences and Party Choice. In P. Beramendi, S. Häusermann, H. Kitschelt, & H. Kriesi (Eds.), The Politics of Advanced Capitalism (pp. 202–230). New York: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Hechter, M. (2000). Containing Nationalism. Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press. Google Scholar
- Hobsbawm, E. (1990). Nations and Nationalism Since 1780: Programme, Myth, Reality. Cambridge and New York: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
- Inglehart, R. (1977). The Silent Revolution: Changing Values and Political Styles Among Western Publics. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press. Google Scholar
- Kriesi, H., Grande, E., Lachat, R., Dolezal, M., Bornschier, S., & Frey, T. (2008). West European Politics in the Age of Globalization. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Google Scholar
- Lipset, S. M., & Rokkan, S. (1967). Cleavage Structures, Party Systems, and Voter Alignments: An Introduction. In S. M. Lipset & S. Rokkan (Eds.), Party Systems and Voter Alignments: Cross-National Perspectives (pp. 1–64). New York: Free Press. Google Scholar
- Samuel, R. (1992). Mrs. Thatcher’s Return to Victorian Values. Proceedings of the British Academy, 78, 9–29.Google Scholar