Beyond Magna Carta

Author: Andrew Blick
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
ISBN: 1849469644
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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The 800th anniversary of Magna Carta falls in June 2015. In this work Dr Blick argues that this event should be the occasion for a reassessment of the past, present and future of the UK constitution. He draws on his experience as research fellow to the first ever parliamentary inquiry into the possibility of a written constitution for the UK. Dr Blick considers a series of English and UK historical texts from Anglo-Saxon times onwards, among which Magna Carta is the most prominent, which sought to set out arrangements for the governance of England and later the UK as a whole. He argues that they comprise a powerful tradition of written constitutional documents, and stresses the importance of the European dimension to their introduction and content. The author then considers the present nature of the UK constitution, describing the period of immense flux through which it has passed in recent decades, and the implications of this phase of change. Dr Blick identifies a need for a full written constitution for the UK as the next appropriate step. Finally, he discusses the democratic processes suitable to devising such a text, and what its contents might be. 'With this book Andrew Blick has made a major contribution to our understanding of how our system of government has worked in the past, how it is working ? or not working ? now, and what it could be in the future. Combing the centuries, he challenges many misconceptions and makes a powerful case for a written constitution. This volume is absolutely essential to anyone who wants to appreciate the real meaning of Magna Carta and why we should celebrate it.' Graham Allen MP, Chair, House of Commons Political and Constitutional Reform Committee 'Beyond Magna Carta brings together the utility of a road map with the fascination of a changing cartography of political thought ? all part of the constitutional development of these islands from the Great Charter of 1215 to the confusing aftermath of the Scottish Referendum of 2014. It is a superb work of explanation capped by intriguing suggestions of future possibilities.' Lord Hennessy of Nympsfield, FBA, Attlee Professor of Contemporary British History, Queen Mary, University of London.

The Constitution of the United Kingdom

Author: Peter Leyland
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
ISBN: 1849469083
Format: PDF, Kindle
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This acclaimed book provides a topical and contextual outline of the principles,doctrines and institutions that underpin the United Kingdom constitution. The third edition of The Constitution of the United Kingdom has been comprehensively revised and updated to take account of recent constitutional developments and debates. This includes: the revised framework for devolution following the 2014 referendum in Scotland, the constitutional ramifications of the realignment of UK politics reflected in the result of the 2015 general election and the debate over the possible replacement of the Human Rights Act 1998 with a British Bill of Rights. The chapters are written in sufficient detail for anyone coming to the subject for the first time to develop a clear and informed view of how the constitution is arranged and how it operates. The main themes include: discussion of the history, sources and conventions of the constitution; later chapters deal with: constitutional principles, the role of the Crown, Parliament and the electoral system, government and the executive, the constitutional role of courts including the protection of human rights, the territorial distribution of power between central, devolved and local government, and the European Union dimension. In addition, the book offers analysis of the evolution of the uncodified UK constitution, its strengths and perceived weaknesses, and of reforms aimed at its modernisation.

The Codes of the Constitution

Author: Andrew Blick
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
ISBN: 1509904107
Format: PDF
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This book describes an astounding feat of constitutional writing and publication. For a number of decades, officials working across different branches of the United Kingdom (UK) constitution have been engaged in a series of separate projects. Taken in their totality, they amount to a vast enterprise. Yet, until now, no-one has fully recognised or critically analysed what has taken place. There has been a proliferation in the UK of publicly available codes, normally lacking a basis in statute, providing official accounts of a variety of different features of UK constitutional rules and principles. They cover institutions ranging from the Cabinet to the Civil Service to the judiciary, and relationships between entities such as central government and the devolved executives; and between the UK executive and the Westminster Parliament. Among them are prominent texts such as the Ministerial Code, the Cabinet Manual, the Guide to Judicial Conduct and the devolution Memorandum of Understanding Â? as well as more obscure documents that nonetheless contain important stipulations regarding the operation of the system. Similar developments have taken place in countries including Australia, Canada and New Zealand. The author explores the history of this phenomenon in the UK, how it functions today here and elsewhere in the Commonwealth, and its implications for the UK constitution.

The Oxford Handbook of Political Leadership

Author: R. A. W. Rhodes
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 0191645869
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Political leadership has made a comeback. It was studied intensively not only by political scientists but also by political sociologists and psychologists, Sovietologists, political anthropologists, and by scholars in comparative and development studies from the 1940s to the 1970s. Thereafter, the field lost its way with the rise of structuralism, neo-institutionalism, and rational choice approaches to the study of politics, government, and governance. Recently, however, students of politics have returned to studying the role of individual leaders and the exercise of leadership to explain political outcomes. The list of topics is nigh endless: elections, conflict management, public policy, government popularity, development, governance networks, and regional integration. In the media age, leaders are presented and stage-managed—spun—as the solution to almost every social problem. Through the mass media and the Internet, citizens and professional observers follow the rise, impact, and fall of senior political officeholders at closer quarters than ever before. This Handbook encapsulates the resurgence by asking, where are we today? It orders the multidisciplinary field by identifying the distinct and distinctive contributions of the disciplines. It meets the urgent need to take stock. It brings together scholars from around the world, encouraging a comparative perspective, to provide a comprehensive coverage of all the major disciplines, methods, and regions. It showcases both the normative and empirical traditions in political leadership studies, and juxtaposes behavioural, institutional, and interpretive approaches. It covers formal, office-based as well as informal, emergent political leadership, and in both democratic and undemocratic polities.

A Brief History of the Magna Carta

Author: Geoffrey Hindley
Publisher: Hachette UK
ISBN: 1472109252
Format: PDF, Docs
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In 1215, the Barons of England forced King John to sign a revolutionary document which would change the political landscape of Britain and beyond for the next 800 years. Magna Carta was the forerunner of the Constitution that limited the powers of the crown and its echoes can be found in the seventeenth century Civil Wars, the struggles for American Independence, the work of Thomas Paine and in the bedrock of all contemporary liberal nations. As civil liberties and the rule of law are increasingly under question as part of the 'War on Terror', it has never been more essential to return to the original document, signed at Runnymede in June 1215. Leading medieval historian Geoffrey Hindley retells the story of events leading up to the conference and looks at the document itself, showing how it has resonated over centuries and throughout the world.

A Magna Carta for all Humanity

Author: Francesca Klug
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317425715
Format: PDF, Docs
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The Magna Carta, sealed in 1215, has come to stand for the rule of law, curbs on executive power and the freedom to enjoy basic liberties. When the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was adopted by the United Nations in 1948, it was heralded as 'a Magna Carta for all human kind'. Yet in the year in which this medieval Charter’s 800th anniversary is widely celebrated, the future of the UK’s commitment to international human rights standards is in doubt. Are ‘universal values’ commendable as a benchmark by which to judge the rest of the world, but unacceptable when applied ‘at home’? Francesca Klug takes us on a journey through time, exploring such topics as ‘British values,’ ‘natural rights,’ ‘enlightenment values’ and ‘legal rights,’ to convey what is both distinctive and challenging about the ethic and practice of universal human rights. It is only through this prism, she argues, that the current debate on human rights protection in the UK can be understood. This book will be of interest to students of British Politics, Law, Human Rights and International Relations.

Magna Carta

Author: David Starkey
Publisher: Quercus
ISBN: 1681445999
Format: PDF
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In this erudite, entertaining book, award-winning historian and television presenter David Starkey untangles historical and modern misconceptions about one of the founding documents of democracy. Along the way, he shows how the Magna Carta laid the foundation for the British constitution, influenced the American Revolution and the U.S. constitution, and continues to shape jurisprudential thinking about individual rights around the world today. In 1215, King John I of England faced a domestic crisis. He had just lost an expensive campaign to retake his ancestral lands in France, an unfortunate adventure that he had funded by heavily taxing the baronial lords of England. Sick of the unpopular king's heavy-handed rule, and unimpressed by the king's unsuccessful attempt to seize Normandy, the feudal barons united to make demands of their sovereign for certain protections. These demands, the "Articles of the Barons," were submitted to the king in rough draft after the rebels occupied three cities, most significantly London. A few years later, after being edited and amplified by the then-Archbishop of Canterbury, the Articles would come to be known as the Magna Carta. The self-interested barons couldn't have known it at the time, but those demands would one day become the bedrock of democratic political development around the globe--even though that influence was largely due to mythologizing by later scholars who warped the symbolism of the document to support their arguments in favor of the rights of all citizens. Although the Magna Carta itself made no requests on behalf of the peasantry, in its structure the outlines of modern democratic reform are plainly visible. Among other things, it demanded limits on the ability of the crown to levy taxes; protection of the rights of the church; the guarantee of swift justice; and a ban on unjust imprisonment. Those protections and guarantees were strictly intended for benefit of feudal barons, but the free citizens of today's democratic nations owe an enormous debt to this history-changing document.