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Revolt on the Right: Explaining Support for the Radical Right in Britain (Extremism and Democracy) [Paperback]

Robert Ford , Matthew J. Goodwin
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
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Book Description

18 Mar 2014 0415661501 978-0415661508

The UK Independence Party (UKIP) is the most significant new party in British politics for a generation. In recent years UKIP and their charismatic leader Nigel Farage have captivated British politics, media and voters. Yet both the party and the roots of its support remain poorly understood. Where has this political revolt come from? Who is supporting them, and why? How are UKIP attempting to win over voters? And how far can their insurgency against the main parties go? Drawing on a wealth of new data – from surveys of UKIP voters to extensive interviews with party insiders – in this book prominent political scientists Robert Ford and Matthew Goodwin put UKIP's revolt under the microscope and show how many conventional wisdoms about the party and the radical right are wrong. Along the way they provide unprecedented insight into this new revolt, and deliver some crucial messages for those with an interest in the state of British politics, the radical right in Europe and political behaviour more generally.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Routledge (18 Mar 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0415661501
  • ISBN-13: 978-0415661508
  • Product Dimensions: 19.3 x 12.7 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 7,094 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Revolt on the Right is a rich and insightful dissection of Britain's first new major political force in a generation. Ford and Goodwin combine rigorous yet accessible statistical analysis of UKIP's supporters with unprecedented access to party activists and leaders. They paint a detailed portrait of the social forces driving UKIP's emergence and how the party itself has developed to mobilise a new mass electorate. This book is essential reading for anyone looking to understand this fascinating, and potentially disruptive, new force in British politics. Anthony Heath, Emeritus Professor of Sociology, University of Oxford, and Professor of Sociology, University of Manchester

Ford and Goodwin haven’t just talked to everyone who counts and crunched all the data that’s out there. They’ve produced a really approachable book on a party which, by providing disoriented and disillusioned voters with the alternative they’ve been looking for, may well make a big impact at the next election and beyond. Tim Bale, Professor of Politics, Queen Mary University of London, author of The Conservative Party: From Thatcher to Cameron

Revolt on the Right is not just a timely and fascinating book; it is also an important one: the first detailed study of one of the most significant developments in modern British politics – the rise of UKIP, which not only taps into popular discontent with the European Union, but has emerged as Britain’s first major non-toxic party to the right of the Conservatives. Peter Kellner, President of YouGov.

An essential analysis of the phenomenon that is UKIP in the run up to the 2015 General Election. Vital for anyone studying modern British politics seriously. Ben Page, Chief Executive of Ipsos MORI.

As the first serious study of the biggest challenge to the political status quo in 30 years, Revolt on the Right will be hard to better. It is both a garish picture of what the British right looks like when it has had one beer too many, and a sympathetic and occasionally touching account of the frustrations of the white working class voters progressive culture and conservative economics have decided they can do without. Nick Cohen, The Observer.

A forensic insight into the explosive rise of Britain's radical right, packed full of compelling research and first-rate analysis. A must-read for all those interested in the state of modern Britain. Owen Jones, columnist for The Independent and author of CHAVS: The Demonization of the Working Class.

This is an outstanding contribution to understanding contemporary politics: a rigorous assessment of the attitudes and demographics of UKIP voters as well as a brilliant story of the people and feuds behind the disorderly rise of a popular movement.

John Rentoul, Chief politicial commentator, The Independent on Sunday

UKIP – a quixotic project to transform UK politics or the catalyst for partisan realignment? Read Ford and Goodwin’s comprehensive and expert analysis before trying to resolve the question. Professor Michael Thrasher, The Elections Centre, Plymouth University, UK.

"This book presents an insightful and highly informative analysis of the most significant independent challenge to the existing party system in England. It is a must read for anyone interested in the future of British politics." John Curtice, Professor of politics at Strathclyde University and a research consultant for ScotCen Social Research.

 "The book is rich in analytical data and contains the occasional anecdotal gem." Kiran Stacey, Financial Times Political Correspondent

"Revolt on the Right is a must-read book for all politicians of the main parties as well as the political commentariat." - Keith Simpson, Conservative MP for Broadland and PPS to the Foreign Secretary

About the Author

Robert Ford is Lecturer in Politics in the School of Social Sciences, University of Manchester, UK, and tweets @RobFordMancs.

Matthew Goodwin is Associate Professor in the School of Politics and International Relations at the University of Nottingham, UK. He is also Associate Fellow at Chatham House and tweets @GoodwinMJ.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A thorough analysis with a fatal flaw 16 April 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Ford and Goodwin have produced an extensive and detailed volume on the novel political phenomenon that is UKIP. The degree and depth of their analysis far exceeds anything which has gone before, and this three hundred page book, published in the spring of 2014, could justifiably be considered the definitive work on the rise of UKIP as an electoral force in the twenty years following its birth in 1993.

F & G are keen to identify the types of voters attracted to UKIP, and to this end they make extensive use of statistical analyses to identify the typical UKIP supporter. Their thorough research leads them to dismiss the simplistic journalistic stereotype of UKIP voters largely as disaffected middle class Tories. Yes such people exist in the Party hierarchy, and yes the Party founders may have been of this ilk, but UKIP today is also supported at the ballot box by a very different kind of voter. Those who now vote for Nigel Farage are, on average, lower down the social scale than supporters of any other political Party including Labour. They are the disaffected, the elderly and those hit by the hard economic times. They are the old traditional working class and those who feel their country is morphing into something unrecognizable from the one they grew up in - and is much the worse for all that. UKIP supporters may have started out as EU refuseniks but to this campaign they have added many other anti-establishment woes. Foremost amongst these has been mass immigration, which surged during the Blair years and has continued at a high level ever since. And since all three major parties have been in power for at least some of this period, this has allowed UKIP to exploit its electoral message of ‘a plague on all your houses’ to the whole Westminster establishment.
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41 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Scholarly yet very readable 24 Mar 2014
By Rimbaud
I would urge readers to ignore the silly one star review above. This is a very balanced and nuanced view of the emergence of Ukip as a serious player within British politics. It traces the party from its emergence in the early Nineties to its current status as a serious player on the electoral scene that is riding high in the polls. Although based on detailed empirical social science research, using electoral data and surveys for example, the authors also seem to have talked to everyone that matters within Ukip itself. The book manages to be objective and scholarly but is also enlivened by some amusing anecdotes so it is far from 'dry' academic research. It also offers a powerful portrayal of the - normally working-class - voters who feel abandoned by the main parties and have become the bedrock of Ukip's support.

This is essential reading for anyone interested in the future of British politics.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
...or how the Labour Party cynically abandoned its traditional working class supporters in search of middle class university educated voters.

This book clarifies why this Labour Party member has left the party. Worth reading to understand why many others have also.

It goes beyond the sneering medias view of UKIP supporters and shows a decent, honest and hard working people who have been patronized at best and ignored at worst by an arrogant cynical political class.
None of the "big three" come out well from this. Told in straightforward and readable prose backed up by figures.
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This book is resolutely empirical and boasts a vast catalogue of stats concerning the social profile of Ukip supporters in terms of social class, gender, age, ethnicity and so forth. The tone is academic and dispassionate, this is no polemic. However it is reasonable inference that the authors hail from the 'centre-left'.

I would have been interested to see this study fleshed out with a consideration of Ukip's ideology, something that the authors here largely eschew, although there are numerous references to social liberalism and social conservatism and its respective association with an educated middle class strata and a declining bloc of blue collar workers and pensioners.

So whilst these ideologies are cited, they are treated as largely unproblematic entities which don't warrant any further unpacking. So for instance in Ukip's genesis, the authors ignore Sked's original conception of euroskepticism as an unaligned liberal venture. Indeed euroskepticism at one time enjoyed significant currency on the Labour Left and trade union movement.

Ford and Goodwin continue to hammer out the salient fact of Ukip's association with the 'left behind' declining working class and how their views remain uncongenial to the middle class elite that now run the show. However this becomes repetitive and tautological in later chapters.

The authors fail to discuss Ukip's championing of 'New Right' themes and examine its free market 'libertarian' philosophy, except as a fleeting reference when they make note of the BNP's protectionism/collectivism.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars No longer like the mythical town of Brigadoon
While it’s almost impossible to produce such a study without value judgements on the underpinning ideology and policies bring analysed somehow seeping through, this book makes... Read more
Published 3 days ago by P. J. Dunn
5.0 out of 5 stars Very interesting and thorough
Excellent book. A fair and balanced view. One could hardly expect anyone to have any sympathy for the B.N.P. The only negative is if you want analysis of U.K.I. Read more
Published 8 days ago by Mr J G North
4.0 out of 5 stars I found it a good read and certainly feel more educated with regards...
This is a book for anyone who is wondering just what the hell is going on out there in the murky world of politics, and needs it explaining in plain English. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Mrs. C. J. Mackay
4.0 out of 5 stars The Folly of Dave
UKIP appeals mostly to those aged over fifty who feel changes to society over the past fifty years have rollercoastered - that in terms of British cultural values and mores, the... Read more
Published 3 months ago by charlie
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential if you want to understand the rise in popularity of UKIP
A clear, thorough assessment of UKIP's history and their prospects.
Published 3 months ago by Dominic
4.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating and thorough analysis
This book is a fascinating and thorough analysis of the rise of the radical Right, in particular the rise and rise of UKIP. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Kevin Ramsey
5.0 out of 5 stars The rise of radicalism
This is well-researched book, and is well-balanced.
It shows how UKIP has come from a tiny fringe group to the third major party in the UK. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Peter I. Robbins
3.0 out of 5 stars NOT POPULAR IN LONDON
Published 4 months ago by CENTRAL LONDON MAN
5.0 out of 5 stars Great insight in to UKIP
Very interesting to see where UKIP's support comes from, and what stand for. I hope to see the party do well and urge readers to vote UKIP!
Published 5 months ago by finn94
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read and a fantasic insight!
Fantasic book full of facts and figures, very interesting to see the reasoning why Euroscepticism is rising in the UK. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Matthew
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