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1859 and all that

4 February 2014

My friends and colleagues Philip Cowley (University of Nottingham) and Rob Ford (University of Manchester; and definitely NOT the Mayor of Toronto) are putting together a book comprised of short articles by various election experts, to be published in the lead-up to the next UK general election. The basic idea is to explore major features of electoral politics in Britain via about fifty short, digestible pieces, each of which will be based around some interesting finding or quirky statistic. (I’m sure you are all noting this down to put the book on your Christmas present lists).

Anyway, somehow I have managed to scrape into the putative team of authors for the book. And I thought that Blog readers might be interested in my draft chapter, 1859 and All That. It covers ground that I have touched upon in one or two previous Blog posts, although not in quite this form. (I’m fairly sure, also, that I haven’t mentioned the Austro-Sardinian war in any previous blog posts. A serious omission which I am glad to be able to rectify).

I hope that at least some of you find the chapter interesting, and that it might whet your appetites for the book. As I said, it is just a draft chapter, so any comments for suggested improvements would be welcome. (Although please bear in mind that I can’t make the piece any longer – there was a strict word limit).

Blog readers may also be interested to know that the next Welsh Political Barometer poll is not too far away. More on that soon.


  1. Harry Hayfield

    I’m not sure if I would qualify as an “expert” especially compared to some in the world of elections, but would they be interested in something that answers the question “Can a party win an election and lose at the same time?”

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