The New British Constitution Illustrated Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 23 ratings
ISBN-13: 978-1841136714
ISBN-10: 1841136719
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Editorial Reviews


“In explaining how this new British constitution has emerged in the space of a political generation, Bogdanor is not only an insightful but also a congenial companion. His mastery of the subject is conveyed in a conversational style which makes the book a pleasure to read and for this reason The New British Constitution will appeal to the widest possible readership.
I am reluctant to end a review of such a valuable book with a cliché but in this case it is warranted. It is a 'must read' for anyone interested in British politics.” ―The Journal of Legislative Studies, Volume 15, No. 4

“This is a beautifully written book, the language as clear as the thinking, and it could not be more timely.” ―The Economist

“This book is written with a vigorous clarity, with easy expertise and with quiet wit. Bogdanor is himself a part of the constitution, an unacknowledged legislator: the book is a revelation. More, it is a reproach to journalism, that we have not more clearly explained a great shift of the past decade. He has.” ―The Financial Times

“…[Vernon Bogdanor] is well informed, subtle and immensely thorough. This is not just a book to read, it is one to keep on the shelf for reference. Anyone remotely interested in the constitution, including all the main party leaders, should certainly acquire a copy...The New British Constitution is a formidable and invaluable achievement…” ―Times Higher Education

“Vernon Bogdanor offers a fresh insight into the substantial, and still largely underappreciated, changes to the British constitution. He combines the approaches of the political historian, the constitutional lawyer and the political scientist to put the changes into a wider context. It is a must read for anyone interested in British politics.” ―The Times

“This masterly survey charts the rise of the 'New' constitution and expertly explains both how it works and why it matters. Bogdanor is Dicey and Bagehot rolled into one for the twenty-first century” ―Institute for Public Policy Research

“Vernon Bogdanor's The New British Constitution is a timely work…Bogdanor has set himself an ambitious target in writing this book; he is inviting comparison with the great late Victorian analysts – and advocates – of the old constitution of untrammelled parliamentary sovereignty, Bagehot and Dicey. He is worthy of the comparison. The book is an illuminating guide to quite how much of what we used to know about the British constitution has ceased to be applicable in a comparatively short time...One of Bogdanor's similarities with Bagehot (although he is a better scholar by far) is that he writes with an unusual clarity.” ―Progress

“The British Constitution is a mysterious, ramshackle and amorphous beast. Because much of it has never been written down, some people even claim that it doesn't exist. But in hunting this Snark through the thickets of legislation and tradition, there can be no more doughty guide than Vernon Bogdanor…[a] timely and indeed prescient book.” ―Public Servant

“If David Cameron becomes Prime Minister... he should read the thoughts of the Oxford tutor who explained it all to him when he was a student twenty years ago.” ―The Times Literary Supplement

“The scholarship and clarity is impressive.You will look long and hard for as complete a résumé of what has been done... as an analysis of changes which may or may not have a direction but which have certainly changed Bagehot's settlement, this is an important book.” ―Total Politics

“...this work provides a thorough dissection of contemporary political and constitutional issues that merit careful consideration...the book will interest scholars in the field of British constitutional history: past, present, and future.” ―The Law and Politics Book Review, Vol 19, Issue 10

“Bogdanor's book provides a fascinating insight into the constitution that many of us may have thought we didn't have. What makes it successful is Bogdanor's easy ability to make these issues interesting, real and relevant…The clarity Bogdanor brings to the UK's current constitutional halfway house will, for many, be a political and social revelation. The New British Constitution also undoubtedly provides a strong basis for discussion of future change.” ―Public Service Magazine

The New British Constitution is written with the rare combination of erudition and elegance that places it firmly in the tradition of Dicey and Bagehot.

After four decades of observing and writing about constitutional affairs, Bogdanor has become part of the constitutional furniture. Baroness Helena Kennedy QC once noted that "laws are the autobiography of the nation." If so, then they have a fine biographer in Professor Bogdanor.” ―Judicial Review

“...this is an impressive work which informed and interested people on both sides of the Atlantic should read with care, because it will give them a greater understanding of the issues now facing the united Kingdom as it faces up to a major systemic crisis in her politics and government.” ―The British Politics Group Quarterly, No 138

“Vernon Bogdanor is one of our most astute commentators on constitutional issues. From the discipline of government, he fully engages in legal matters and brings a freshness to public law. This book is written with admirable clarity and is unusually accessible to expert and layman. It is also one of the few works that seek to make sense of contemporary developments in the context of our constitutional history.

This book has already received deservedly wide attention and will continue to do so.” ―Public Law

“Bogdanor's background as a political scientist shows in the keen insight he brings into the interplay of politics with constitutional principle that colour the context within which the constitutional reforms he discusses take place. His conclusions are bold and ... this is a compelling book on a topical subject.” ―Cambridge Law Journal, Volume 69, Part 2

“Vernon Bogdanor is an acknowledged expert in political science and constitutional law. He also writes very well in a style which engages the reader. He offers fresh insights into both the changes which have taken place since 1997 and into the unknown future. The New British Constitution will be of value to everyone with an interest in politics or public law and is highly recommended.” ―SCOLAG Legal Journal, Issue 394

“Bogdanor...magisterially lays out the formal-legal details of recent constitutional change in Britain that lead him to see a "new British constitution" in the making... he does that with admirable clarity and precision.

It is a must-read for anyone concerned with the constitutional ferment in Britain.” ―The Journal of the Review of Politics, Volume 73

About the Author

Vernon Bogdanor, CBE, Fellow of Brasenose College, is Professor of Government at Oxford University, Gresham Professor of Law, a Fellow of the British Academy and an Honorary Fellow of the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies. He has been an adviser to a number of governments, including those of the Czech Republic, Hungary, Kosovo, Israel and Slovakia. His books include The People and the Party System, Multi-Party Politics and the Constitution, Power and the People, and Devolution in the United Kingdom. He is a frequent contributor to TV, radio and the press and is a sometime special adviser to the House of Lords Select Committee on the European Communities (1982-83), and the House of Commons Public Service Committee. Most recently he was awarded the Sir Isiaiah Berlin prize for Lifetime Contribution to Political Studies by the Political Studies Association.

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Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Hart Publishing; Illustrated edition (June 8, 2009)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Paperback ‏ : ‎ 336 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1841136719
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1841136714
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 1.15 pounds
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 6.14 x 0.71 x 9.28 inches
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.6 out of 5 stars 23 ratings

Customer reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5
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Top reviews from the United States

Reviewed in the United States on June 30, 2018
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Reviewed in the United States on October 7, 2009
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Reviewed in the United States on August 6, 2009
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Top reviews from other countries

Officious Bystander
5.0 out of 5 stars Truly Incredible (and indispensable for students)
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on May 20, 2014
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4 people found this helpful
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5.0 out of 5 stars Must-read for every British citizen
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 21, 2010
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5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on May 22, 2012
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Esen Bradley
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 7, 2016
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Irina Sadokha
5.0 out of 5 stars A real must-read for those who want to get a general understanding of modern politics!
Reviewed in Germany on November 9, 2013
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