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Whatever happened to parliamentary democracy in the UK?

Judge, David (2004) Whatever happened to parliamentary democracy in the UK? Parliamentary Affairs, 57 (3). pp. 682-701. ISSN 0031-2290

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Abstract

In view of widespread agreement that there is something seriously wrong with the traditional model of parliamentary democracy in the United Kingdom, this article examines the reasons why the emphasis continues to be placed upon the 'parliamentary' rather than the 'democratic' dimensions of the phrase 'parliamentary democracy'. In doing so, it identifies the Westminster model as a set of norms, values and meanings prescribing legitimate government, and examines the extent to which UK governments still invoke this model to legitimise their actions. Three specific challenges to the Westminster model are examined - the operation of policy networks; the increased significance of judicial review and the impact of the Human Rights Act 1998; and the impact of devolution - to reveal, paradoxically, the continuing significance of the model. Yet, paradox upon paradox, while UK governments continue to espouse the Westminster model to legitimise their actions, they may yet reap - in an inversion of the precepts of that model - the whirlwind of a self-generated and self-perpetuating 'legitimation crisis'.

Item type: Article
ID code: 1465
Keywords: parliamentary democracy, british politics, democracy, government, Great Britain, Political theory, Sociology and Political Science, Law
Subjects: Political Science > Political institutions (Europe) > Great Britain
Political Science > Political theory
Department: Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences (HaSS) > School of Government and Public Policy > Politics
Related URLs:
    Depositing user: Strathprints Administrator
    Date Deposited: 25 Aug 2006
    Last modified: 04 Sep 2014 12:16
    URI: http://strathprints.strath.ac.uk/id/eprint/1465

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