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Summary - book "British Civilization"

Culture and History of the UK and US (Universiteit Antwerpen)

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CHAPTER 2: THE COUNTRY


Geographical identities: Britain comprises islands lying off the north-west coast of Europe, known as the British Isles. The
mainland of England, Scotland and Wales form the largest island, known as Great Britain. Northern Ireland shares the
second largest island with the Republic of Ireland. Smaller islands are Anglesey, the Isle of Wight, the Orkneys, Shetlands,
Hebrides and Scillies. However, the Isle of Man in the Irish sea and Channel Islands off the north coast of France are not
part of the UK, the British government is responsible for their defense and foreign relations (= crown dependencies).
Physical features:
- 15 national parks (Lake District, England, Snowdonia Wales, Cairngorms, Scotland).
- England is larger than other countries and has biggest population (84%). Heaviest population concentrations: London,
South-east England: Birmingham, Yorkshire, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester; Newcastle & Sunderland in the north-east.
- UK comprises of many coasts, white cliffs, highlands of Scotland and Welsh valleys and mountains.
Climate: mainly temperate.
Agriculture: significant industry (poultry, eggs, wheat, potatoes, ...) but today farms subsidies are being reduced.
Fisheries: one of Europes leading fishing nations.
Forestry: 12 % of UK land area, least forested country of Europe.
Energy resources: primary sources: oil, gas, nuclear power, hydroelectric power & coal. Secondary source: electricity.
Transport: privatized roads, railways, shipping and civil aviation.
Communication: private-British telecom, public- Royal mail and Post office.
CHAPTER 3: THE PEOPLE
Early settlement to AD 1066:
Earliest human bones: 500,000 years old, animal bones 700,000.
First people: Old Stone Age (Palaeolithic) nomads from mainland Europe who used stone implements & Homo Sapiens
8300BC Mesolithic (middle stone age) & 4000BC the Neolithic (New Stone Age): advanced skills in stone carving and
agricultural settlements, tamed animals and increased population. Built large wooden, soil and stone monuments
(Stonehenge and Avebury). Later came the Bronze Age.
600 BC Celtic tribes from western Europe and brought Iron Age civilization. 200BC: Belgic tribes, subjected to Romans from
55BC until AD 409. They introduced political and legal institutions, agricultural methods and imported products.
AD 409 Germanic tribes (Angles, Saxons and Jutes from north western Europe) invaded the country.
8th-9thC: invasions of Scandinavian (Vikings) until they were defeated in the 10th-11thC. Result: integration of people,
farming, political institutions and words.
French-Normans invasion in AD 1066 - Battle of Hastings, England subjected to their rule. Norman Conquest marked last
successful external military invasion. It influenced language and initiated many social, legal and institutional systems. Yet
Celtic civilization continued in Wales, Scotland and Ireland. Anglo-Normans ruled Ireland and Wales. Scotland was inhabited
by Scots from Ireland (AD200-400).
Growth and immigration up to the 20th century
Political & military attempts of English 12thC monarchy to unite Ireland, Scotland and Wales under the crown as protection
against threats and increased power and bloody struggles and tensions Britain = unstable union of 4 old nations.
Despite the tensions there was an internal migration, mainly by the Irish, Welsh and Scottish to England. Immigration from
abroad was due to:
1. Religious & political persecution, trade, business and employment (Jewish moneylenders, Italian bankers, blacks
associated with slave trade, Dutch and French protestants in 17thC). It contributed to the economy, art, culture and
political developments but also resulted in jealousy, discrimination and violence from the indigenous (locals).
2. Agricultural & commercial developments: started with Neolithic settlers, continued with Saxons (cultivated crops,
inventions & equipment, open-field system), and in 14thC with Dutch and Flemish weavers who transformed Britain to
a nation of sheep farmers, cloth & textile exporters & trades. By 1800 south east = concentrated with agricultural base.
3. Decreasing immigration from 1700 and exportation of people to North America and expanding colonies
4. Internal migration from countryside into manufacturing centers due to Industrial Revolutions in 18thC: discovery of
coal-generated steam power, factories and factory towns were needed for mass-produce. People sought work and
escaped rural poverty (moved to textile mills in Lancashire and Yorkshire). The population grew from 1801-1901 from
18.5 to 37 million but decreased in Ireland in 4 million because of famine, mortality and emigration.
Immigration form 1900
1920s: Poles and Jews escaped persecution in East Europe and settled in East End London which attracted newcomers.
1930s: world recession and WWII: refugees from Nazi-occupied Europe (Poles, Latvians and Ukrainians) and Soviet bloc
countries and economic immigrants entered Britain.
1940s: increasing immigration of non-white new commonwealth nations (India, Pakistan & West Indies), to fill manual low-
paid jobs (transport, catering, health service & manual trades, later: textile & iron). 70s: all over Britain, mainly in cities.

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Other political refugees: Hungarians, Czechs, Chileans, Libyans, East African Asians, Iranians, Vietnamese.
Other economic immigrants and Commonwealth (today minorities): Italians, French, German, Irish, Turkish, Cypriot, Chinese
& Spanish. (It is argued that Britain possesses deep-rooted racism of racial superiority difficult for integration of non-
white population. Opposing argument: communities should confront their own problems & integrate with the majority).
Race Relations Acts: 1976, made it unlawful to discriminate on grounds of race, ethnicity and national origin and
establishment of The Commission for Racial Equality.
Ghettoization: in some areas, outbreaks of racial tension, violence and harassment do occur.
Work permits: 2004, after enlargement of EU, government established work permits for new entrants for at least a year to
fill vacancies (hospitality, catering, transport, health service) and increased significantly immigration to the UK.
Specific requirements for Britain citizenship added in 2002: demonstration of knowledge about British life, acceptable level
of English, attend a citizenship ceremony.
Population movement from 1950s
Reverse movement from big cities to New Towns in rural areas, due to bomb damage from WWII, slum clearance and the
need to use the inner city land for shops, offices, warehouses and transport utilities.
Late 1990s: population growth more births than deaths, rising fertility, better life expectancy and increasing immigration.
CHAPTER 4: POLITICS AND GOVERNMENT
Political history
12th C: invasion of England in Ireland.
16th C: union of Wales and England.
17th C: the thrones of England and Scotland were merged.
18th C: Acts of Union: England/Wales and Scotland as Great Britain.
19th C: Great Britain and Ireland united as UK.
1921: Independence of The Republic of Ireland, leaving Northern Ireland within the UK.
1998-9: Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland regained some former political identities under -Devolution.
Decline of the monarchy and the rise of Parliament
Early monarchs had considerable power but accepted feudal limitations. But: king King John (12-13thC) ignored these.
Powerful French-Norman barons opposed him by forcing him to sign the Magna Carta, a cornerstone of British liberties that
protected aristocracy rather than the citizens. It restricted monarchs power, increased aristocracys influence and
stipulated that citizens shouldn't be imprisoned without trial.
13thC: Model Parliament of Edward I was first representative English Parliament. (1258: English council formed by nobles,
1264: broader Parliament was summoned). Its 2 houses consisted of House of Lords/Bishops and House of Commons (male).
14thC: an independent Scottish Parliament was created and Ireland also had one from medieval times. A small Privy Council
(royal government outside the Parliament) was developed to rule the country effectively and lasted until the 18thC, when
strong parliamentary structures were created.
15th-17thC: return of royal dominance in Tudor England by internal wars (War of the Roses: Yorkists Lancastrians). Union
of Wales and England, monarchs controlled the Parliament and intervened in Ireland.
Early 17thC: James VI of Scotland became James I of England Stuart dynasty Charles I Parliament refused his
requests for money & forced him to sign the Petition of Rights to prevent him from raising taxes Charles refused and
tried to arrest the leaders in House of Commons, which provoked anger against the crown and a Civil War. The protestant
parliamentarians under Oliver Cromwell won and Charles was beheade. The monarchy was abolished.
Late 17thC: Britain was ruled as Protectorate by Cromwell and his son Richard. Parliament only comprised House of
Commons. His protestant rule and parliamentary cause in Scotland and Ireland provoked hatred and unpopularity, most
people wanted the monarchy back. The two Houses were re-established in 1660 Charles Stuart II.
The growth of political parties and constitutional structures
17th C: rise of 2 dominant political groups: Whigs and Tories, based on religious and ideological conflicts in Civil War
characteristic of British two-party politics.
The Whigs: Cromwellian Protestants and aristocracy didn't accept catholic James II as successor to Charles II, wanted
religious freedom for all protestants.
The Tories: supported royalist beliefs and helped Charles II.
James attempt to rule without the parliament and ignoring the laws failed, and forced the Tories to join the Whigs in inviting
the Dutch protestant William of Orange in 1688. James fled to France, William succeeded the throne as Britains first
constitutional monarch. Since no force was involved, its named the Bloodless or Glorious Revolution. Later came the
Declaration of Rights 1689 which strengthened Parliament and future monarchs couldn't rule without parliaments consent
and the Act of Settlement specified that the monarch must be Protestant.

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The effects of the Glorious Revolution on constitution and politics:


- Division of power between an executive branch (monarch and Privy Council); parliamentary legislative branch (two
Houses and monarch); and the judiciary (judges independent of parliament and monarch).
- Acts of Union joining England/Wales and Scotland in 1707.
Parliamentary influence grew in early 18thC because of lack of interest of king George I in politics. He appointed Robert
Walpole (Whigs) to his Privy Council, who became chief minister and increased the parliamentary role and has been called
Britains first prime minister.
The expansion of voting rights
Late 18th - early 19thC: no democracy, political authority in hand of landowners, merchants & aristocrats, most people didn't
possess the vote. Bribery and corruption were common. Tories & Whigs were against electoral reforms.
19thC: First Reform Act: increasing population & industrials revolutions irresistible pressures. Whigs reformed & extended
the voting's rights to small middle class = First Reform Act. Later acts gave the vote to men with property and certain income.
1918: all males aged over 21 and limited categories of women over 30 can vote.
1928: all males and females aged 21 can vote (with exceptions).
< 1928: wives and their property were possessions of husbands. Women is the mother in the home, although some found
employment in home industries and factories or domestic servants, teachers and governesses (in charge of children).
End 19th C: womens social and political position is slightly better -got elementary education and some in higher education.
Mid 19th C: womens organizations founded for their rights: Suffrage Movement increased the role of women in society. It
is argued that womens position was changed in the mid-20th C because of the recognition of their work during WWI&II.
Growth of government structure
Start: 18th-19thC, ministers were usually from the House of Commons and shared responsibilities. Prime ministership
developed from monarchs chief minister. The central force became the parliamentary Cabinet of senior ministers (grew
from the Privy Council). Government was formed from majority in House of Commons. Largest minority became opposition.
House of Lords and monarchy lost power and reforms restricted their authority and added non-hereditary titles. Nowadays
they can only delay bills (without the financials).
Tories became known as conservatives in 1830s (believed in established values, traditions and supported business and
commerce, strong links with Church of England). Whigs developed into Liberal Party, which promoted enlightened policies
in 19th-20thC but declined in 1918 with the rise of new Labour Party. 1980s: alliance with Social Democrats = 3rd largest party
in UK. Labour became the main opposition to the Conservatives after Liberals decline.
Contemporary British political framework
Multi-level governance model: constitution, monarch as formally head of state, national/devolved/local government for
practical politics, UK parliament has the ultimate say in how to rule the nation, EU has increasingly affected British politics.
Parliament
1. Composition:
a) Non-elected House of Lords, elected House of Commons and monarch. Both houses contain members from all of UK. It
gathers fully only on ceremonies such as the opening of Parliament by monarch in House of Lords, with monarchs
speech which outlines the legislative programme.
b) House of Lords consists of Lords Temporal (hereditary title, elected by their fellows or appointed by political parties or
independent commission) and Lords Spiritual (archbishops and senior bishops).
2. Role:
a) Power in all matters and creates, abolishes or amends laws and institutions all over Britain. In practice, the devolved
matters are dealt with by the devolved bodies of Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.
b) Act of Parliament and law: all parts of Parliament must normally pass a bill. (Vote money for the government, examines
the policies and administration, EU legislation, debates political issues).
c) Legislate according to the rule of law. (Therefore formal and informal checks and balances are done).
d) Maximum duration of 5 years, except for emergencies. Earlier dissolutions are ordered by the monarch on advice of the
prime minister and 55% majority in House of commons. Until 2010 he could choose the date of election.
e) If an MP dies, resigns or is given a peerage (nobility), a by-election is called only for his seat.
Legislation and procedure:
The procedure is under standing orders (detailed rules) in both houses. It is open to the public, transactions are published
daily, debates are televised.
1) Debate begins with a proposal of a Green paper (consultative, allow interested parties to state their case before the bill
is introduced to the Parliament) or a White paper (details future legislation).

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2) First reading or formal introduction of a bill in House of Commons.


3) Second reading and debate on general principles.
4) Committee stage (detailed discussion and amendment).
5) Report stage: amendments.
6) Third reading (formal but debate is possible).
7) House of Lords debates (can delay a non-financial bill, propose amendments, if so it goes back to the Commons).
8) The Bill is sent to the monarch for assent (which hasn't been refused since the 18th century).
9) The Bill becomes an Act of Parliament and is a law.
House of Commons: meets every weekday. The Speaker is the chief officer and is chosen by MPs; interprets the rules, is
neutral, controls the debates and votes, he has the casting vote where there is a tied result.
Bill: draft law, most are public but others may be private because they relate to matters as local government or private
members Bills introduced by MPs.
UK Parliament elections
General elections are by secret ballot but not compulsory. British Commonwealth and Irish Republic citizens may vote if
they are resident in Britain, included on a constituency register of voters, aged over 18 and not disqualified (mentally ill,
prisoners or members of the House of Lords). Each elector chooses one candidate in a polling station. The candidate who
wins most of the votes in a constituency (areas with about 66,000 voters) is elected MP, this is known as First past the
post system. Proportional representation (PR) is a system supported by Lib Dems that could create a wider selection, but
the 2 major parties (Labour and Conservatives) prefer the existing system since it gives them greater chance and power.
The party political system:
Since 17th C: parliamentary general elections parties present their policies in manifestos to electorate for consideration
during the weeks of campaigning.
Two-party system has alternated power between biggest parties (Conservatives and Labour), except for coalition periods.
Labour Party has historically been a left-of-center party emphasizing social justice, equality of opportunity, economic
planning and state ownership of industries and services. It was supported by trade unions, working class and some middle
class. 1990s: tried to appeal to middle-class voters and moved (by leader Tony Blair) to the center. Leader: Jeremy Corbyn
Conservative Party (= Tories) is a right-of-center party & regards itself a national party emphasizing personal, social and
economic freedom, individual ownership of property and shares and law and order. since 2005 it regained more power but
still was far from being in government. Leader: David Cameron (present prime minister) stressed that it is needed to
change and modernize the image of the party and develop policies that are more in tune with the changing face of the UK.
Liberal Democrats (Lib Dems) were formed in the merge of the Liberal Party and the Social Democratic Party under their
leader Nick Clegg. They see themselves as alternative, based on the center-left of British politics. Leader: Tim Farron
The party that wins most seats in House of Commons at a general election forms the government and will have to gather
more than 33% of the popular vote to win a large number of seats and approach 40% in order to have an overall majority.
(Example: 2010 elections no majority minority or coalition government had to be formed result = coalition of
Conservatives with David Cameron as a prime minister with Lib Dems first British coalition since WWII.
Shadow government = opposition, adversarial: attempts to influence the formation of national policy, proposes
amendments to Bills
Front and back-benchers = seating arrangements in House of Commons, the leaders seat in front and the supporting MPs
in the back in an conferential style; the coalition and the opposition face each other.
Whips are chosen among the MPs by the party leaders. They inform MPs about parliamentary business and maintaining the
partys voting strength by ensuring their attendance at important debates with a notice and the information is underlined
up to 3 lines, which signifies a crucial vote and failure to attend is considered as revolt.
UK government:
Executive arm: centred on Whitehall in London, 10 Downing street = ministries and PMs official residence.
PM is appointed by monarch and is leader of majority party in House of Commons. His power is the authority to choose and
dismiss ministers; leadership of party; control over policy-making. Historically: PM = link monarch - Parliament.
Cabinet: a small executive body in the government, consists of 20 senior ministers who are chosen and ruled over by the
PM. Examples: Chancellor of the Exchequer (Finance minister = George Osborne), Secretary of State for Foreign and
Commonwealth Affairs (Philip Hammond), Secretary of State for the Home Department (Theresa May) and the Secretary
of State for Education (Nicola Ann Morgan).
Government departments (= ministries) are the chief instruments to implement policy, such as the Department for
Communities and Local Government, business, innovation and skills. They are staffed by the Civil Service and are politically
neutral and imposed under restorations in political activities.

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Uk parliamentary control of government:


Constitutional theory: parliament should control the executive branch, however a government or coalition with an overall
majority is able to carry its policies through parliament even if it tries to restrain.
House of Lords can only delay or amend the government legislation. Opposition parties can only oppose in the Commons
and try to persuade the electorate to dismiss the government at the next election. Examination of the government can be
employed at Question Time in the Commons, when to PM is subjected to oral questions from the leader of the Opposition.
Devolved structures:
Devolution: self-government or transfer of some political powers, but no complete independence from Westminster
Parliament. It allows countries to decide more concerning their own affairs in devolved matters such as education, health,
transport, environment, home affairs and local government. Westminster Parliament still has powers over UK matters such
as defense, foreign affairs, social security, taxation, broad economic policy and immigration.
1) 1920s: first devolution = Ireland (growing nationalist feelings in 19thC, hostilities continued, Ireland partitioned in
1922) into the Irish Free State = Republic of Ireland with its own parliament (president = Michael D. Higgins & Prime
Minister = Enda Kenny) and Northern Ireland with a devolved parliament (1921-1972) while remaining part of UK.
2) 1960s: nationalism grew in Wales and Scotland but attempts to give them a devolved power failed.
3) 1990s: Northern Ireland achieved an elected Assembly with legislative and executive power, but was suspended
in 2001 and 2004 because of the failure of IRA to disarm until 2005, however it was restored in 2007 and the peace
process is still holding.
4) 1990s: Scotland got an elected Parliament with legislative and tax-carrying powers and is nowmore independent
with its own first education and health issues legislations. A non-tax-raising elected Assembly in Wales was
established, which still lacks extensive powers with no primary legislation.
Prime minister of Scotland: Nicola Sturgeon Scottish National Party (SNP)
UKIP: UK Independence Party leader Nigel Farage
Local governments:
Local government has grown through the centuries, particularly during the 19th C. It now provides local services such as
education, health, fire service, transport, social services, sanitation and housing, through elected councils.

CHAPTER 5: INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS


Britains historical position as a colonial, economic and political power in the world = declined by the early 1900s due to:
- some colonies (Australia & Canada) had already achieved self-governing status.
- growth nationalism among African and Asian colonies persuaded Britain to decolonialize from 1945.
- global economic competition, 2 WW, Cold War politics and domestic economy and social problems forced Britain to
recognize its reduced international status.
It tried to find a new identity and priorities in relation to Europe, to preserve triad partners with the Commonwealth and
the USA and to find new relations.
Foreign and defense policy
Labour government developed a foreign policy which shifted from past aggressive action to persuasive partnerships (USA,
membership in EU, UN, NATO allows to operate militarily in international stage); coalition for military actions in the
world; ethical and human rights in international and nationalist conflicts. Britain maintains its own military defense with
conventional and nuclear forces.
The empire and Commonwealth
British Empire was built up over 4 centuries (starting 16thC), though colonization had begun the domination of the islands
by the English from the 12thC together with military conquests in Europe, followed by trading activities and settlements in
North and South America, Africa, Asia. The West Indies were exploited commercially and became colonies. British settled in
USA, Australia, Canada, South Africa and New Zealand. By the 19th C, the empire possessed and ruled a quarter of the worlds
population. In the late 19th and early 20th C large colonies such as Canada, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa became
self-governing dominions and eventually independent. In 1931 the British Empire became the British Commonwealth of
Nations, and until the 1960s most of the colonies became independent. They could choose to break the connections or to
stay with the Commonwealth as independent nations. Most of them stayed within, though only few small colonies remain
such as Falklands and Gibraltar. The present Commonwealth is a voluntary association of 53 members, it doesn't have
written laws, parliament or political ruler. The British monarch is its non-political head and has varying constitutional roles
in the different countries. The PMs or heads of states meet every 2 years and discusses common problems. However, Britain
has a declining share of the Commonwealth trading market and its economic priorities are now more with the EU and other
partners.

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The European Union (EU)


Background: desire to create a peaceful and prosperous Europe after WWII and centuries of antagonism and distrust
between European powers. 1950s: Treaty of Rome was signed and formed the European Economic Community (EEC) which
Britain didn't join. (based on economic concerns and instated harmonization of common coal, steel, agricultural and fisheries
policies, abolition of trade tariffs between the member states and development aid to depressed areas). Britain helped to
create the European Free Trade Association (EFTA). It saw its future in trading links with the Commonwealth and USA. in
60s Britain tried to enter the EEC but was vetoed by France. In 1973 Britain and the Republic of Ireland joined EEC and left
EFTA (resignation of French President De Gaulle). Britains poorer regions have benefited from regional funds. In 1992 The
Maastricht Treaty the European Community became the European Union. It provided a common European currency, the
euro, European Bank and common defense, foreign and social policies (27 members). The growth has been seen as an
important political voice in world affairs and powerful trading area in global economic matters. Today it accounts 40% of
the world trade and generates some 30% of nominal gross world product.
Main institutions:
1. European Council (government leaders who meet to discuss on political matters),
2. Council of ministers (policy-implementing and law-initiating),
3. European Commission (administrative force, proposing programmes to the Council of Ministers),
4. European Parliament (elected, 5-year term, advises Council of Ministers; determines EU budget; controls Council &
Commission)
5. European Court of Justice (interprets EU laws, settles disputes concerning these laws).
The Treaty of Lisbon created a permanent President of the European Council and High Representative of the Union for
Foreign Affairs and Security Policy.

Chapter 7: ECONOMY
Economic history
Britain used to be rural. 16thC: growth of colonial empire contributed to national wealth. 18thC: Industrial Revolution
manufacturing inventions stimulated mass production industrial towns expanded Britain = urban & industrialized.
Industrialization opposed because of negative effects (low wages, long hours) social & moral problems. 19thC: Luddites
destroyed machinery. Britain dominant military & economic power. End 19thC: British dominance of world trade declined.
Modern economy: policies, structure, performance
Economic policies
Governments: laissez-faire (letting things take their own course). 1940s: economic performance tied to fiscal, monetary,
political policies. 1945: Labour Government nationalized several services (transferred to public ownership, run by state
through government-appointed boards, responsible to Parliament and subsidized by taxation) reversed by Conservatives
(privatization): services were transferred from state to private companies through sale of shares (by Stock Exchange). It
were profit-making concerns regulated in public interest by independent regulators. Aim: liberalize economy so that
restrictions on businesses were removed. Private industries became virtual monopolies. 1990s: Private Finance Initiative
(PFI) policy: private sector encouraged to invest in public sector building projects. 1997: Labour accepted privatization. It
part-privatized National Air Traffic Services + London Underground. Public-private partnerships (PPP) allow private
companies to invest in large public capital projects. Privatization, private finance initiatives (PFI) + PPP are attacked. Political
parties accept free market (or liberal) economics. Public (social sector) market still exists.
Economic structure
Mixed economy of public & private sectors with further privatization. Britain = attractive low-cost country for foreign
investment. Takeover: large company takes over smaller (often loss-making) firm. Merger: amalgamation between
companies of equal standings. Competition Commission: monitors situation of takeovers & mergers and prevents
monopoly or creating unfair trading conditions. It examines plans, reports to Director General of Fair Trading who (in
reporting to government Secretary of State for Trade and Industry) may rule against takeover or merger.
Economic performance
Recessionary (2007-2010) + expansionary (1994-2005) cycles. British industry = areas with access to natural resources and
transport systems with often 1 major industry industrial decline. Industry failed to adapt to new markets & demands.
Traditional trades reduced. EU grants to revitalize depressed areas. Growth in specialized industries & service sector. 1970s:
discovery North Sea oil & gas are finite & its difficult to find alternative sources. 1980: economy falls to low levels with
high interest rates, unemployment & inflation situation improved economy overheated recession. 1990: Britain
joined European Exchange Rate Mechanism (ERM): stabilize currencies + improve national economies by linking EU
currencies. 1990s: Britain withdrew from ERM floating pound economy recovered 1 of the most successful in the
world. Labour had to spent a lot on services problem of combining market economy with public services. 2000s: mixed
effects from global economic downturn. Britains growth still strong, but economic forecasts scaled back. Treasury =

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government finance ministry. 2007-2010: economy weakened worst global recession since Great Depression rescue
by government bailout of banks (which remain partly state-owned). Deficit: difference between government spending &
income it receives through taxation and other sources. Britain = 6th largest economy & significant industrial and
manufacturing country. GDP: gross domestic product: comprises goods, services, capital & income that country produces.
Economy also affected by fluctuations in value of pound. Devaluation: reducing pounds exchange value, this boosts exports
by making them cheaper but raises cost of imports & dissuaded people from buying foreign goods.
Social class, workforce, employment
Social class
Past: upper, middle, working class. 19thC: industrialization fragmented class divisions 20thC: spread of education greater
social mobility (moving upwards, out of class into which 1 was born). Divisions still exist based on occupation (Office for
National Statistics classification, book p. 185). Last group also known as underclass: people who fall outside usual class
categories. Today: population = middle class (60%) + working class (40%).
Workforce (employed & unemployed but able to work) + employment
Majority = employed by organization. Manual jobs decreased, non-manual jobs increased. Workforce more mobile, more
white-collar & better educated. Half of female workers low-paid & unable to find full-time jobs, often unprotected by trade
unions or law. Equal Pay Acts: men & women who do similar kinds of work should receive same wages. Sex Discrimination
Act: unlawful for employer to discriminate between men women when choosing candidate for jobs. Equal Opportunities
Commission: monitors this legislation. Welfare to Work program: companies willing to create jobs for unemployed are
given subsidies + unemployed may be placed in training and employment-related schemes. People between 16-18 who are
unemployed when leaving school dont receive social security benefits + required to enter training scheme or further
education. Britain lacks adequate vocational education + training schemes for young people in technical areas.
Financial institutions
Square mile of city of London = center of British & world finance. 17th-18thC: city institutions founded: Bank of England (old
lady of Threadneedle Street) = UK central bank, sets interest rates to control inflation. Its organized by a governor and
directors who are appointed by government. Canary Wharf: part of Docklands redevelopment program in south-east
London, offering mixture of residential housing, hotels, commercial companies and financial offices. Central clearing banks
(HSBC, Lloyds Banking Group 1680 = insurance, Royal Bank of Scotland): banking services throughout Britain, criticized in
2007-2010 credit crunch. London Stock Exchange, 1773: market for quoted (listed) stocks and shares in British public
companies and overseas. Revolutionized in 1986 (=Big Bang) which deregulated financial market and enabled greater
freedom of operation. 1987: stock market crash. 1997: financial transactions organized by computer. Foreign Exchange
Market (London): Brokers in corporate or bank offices deal in foreign currencies. 2000: Financial Services Authority (FSA) &
Financial Ombudsman to oversee financial dealings. FSA broke up and handed regulatory duties to Bank of England.
Financial Policy Committee: guard stability of financial system.
Industrial and commercial institutions
Trade unions
1871: legal recognition give members protection against sickness & unemployment (like Law Society, Police Federation
& British Medical Association). Members pay annual subscription. Unions vary in political orientation. Some unions admit
only members who work in a specific job, others include workers from different areas (Transport and General Workers
Union, T&G). Some unions joined with others in similar fields (Unison, public service workers). Trades Union Congress (TUC):
organization to coordinate trade union interest & promotes worker cooperation but influence declined. Pickets: union
strikers. Legislation controls extreme union practices + introduced democratic procedures into union activities. Strikes are
legitimate & gain public support; political strikes are rejected. Britain = low-wage economy.
Employers organizations: Most are member of Confederation of British Industry (CBI).
Industrial relations: cause of poor industrial relations could be bad management & Britains economic problems, not unions.
Advisory, Conciliation, Arbitration Service (ACAS)
Independent, government-financed organization that improves industrial relations but doesnt have binding powers and
parties may disregard its advice. It also oversees operation of employment law and abuse of workers legal rights.
Consumer protection
Statutory protection grew and harmonized with EU law. 1980s: Supply of Goods and Services of Act & Consumer Protection
Act. Office of Fair Trading (OFT): oversees consumer behaviour of trade and industry & funds Consumer Direct which works
in partnership with Local Authority Trading Standard Services (offering info & advice on consumer issues). Citizens Advice
Bureaux, Consumer Advice Centres & consumer protection departments of local councils: help on consumer affairs on local
level. Trading Standards Institute: private consumer-protection groups. Independent National Consumer Council monitors
consumers attitudes. Which? champions consumes & applies rigorous tests on anything.

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Attitudes to economy
Economy = important issue & central to peoples concern in areas which affect them directly & on personal level: future
public spending cuts, taxation, unemployment. To promote recovery from recessions, government must cut public spending
or raise taxes. Majority = satisfied with their job. Flexible working is key part of British employment patterns but also
negative responses: business & economic arrangements in Britain are unfair, workers should be given more control over
and say in organization or workplaces (now covered by Social Chapter of Maastricht Treaty).
Chapter 8: SOCIAL SERVICES
Social services history
Past: state social services = non-existent (churches gave some protection) Elizabeth I (16thC): Poor Law: state took over
the organization of charity provisions but this was limited in effects 18th-19thC: conditions worsened as industrial
revolution and population increased (also caused epidemics) 1834: Poor Law Amendment Act: prevent abuse of parish
social relief and reduce high taxes workhouses were created in which needy could work and live but often resulted in
misery and separation of families. Governments refused to allow workers to organize themselves in trade unions so workers
created their own social and self-help clubs 19thC: establishment of local boards to control public health and initiate
health schemes 1848: public health apparatus 1875: effective national system 1922: Progressive Liberal
governments introduced reform programmes which formed basic structures of future welfare state. Financial and physical
exhaustion from WWI & economic crises halted social services expansion 1942: Beveridge Report (= model for welfare
state): comprehensive system of social security & free health care for all should be established. This would be financed by
national insurance scheme, to which works would contribute, and out of which they and their families would receive
benefits when required 1945-1951: present welfare state; cost is provided out of general taxation.
Household and demographic structures
Traditional household (nuclear family: 2 parents + children living together/extended unit) falls apart more adults will live
alone. Marriage is still the most common form of partnership. People tend to delay their marriage until late 20s. Theres an
increase in cohabitation (same-sex couples, couples and civil partners living together outside marriage) resulting to births
where couples are registered by both parents. Adoption of children by some registered civil partners and same-sex couples
increases. Non-marital births caused controversy on moral and cost grounds and retain some of the old stigma although
their legal standing improves. Childbearing is delayed. Contraception becomes more widespread. Britain has a high
percentage of working mothers but provisions for maternity leave and child care are low. Burden upon families grows as
the population becomes more elderly, state provision is reduced and number of disabled increases.
Social services (pensions and welfare)
Operated by local government and Department of Work and Pensions. People may receive payments from contributory
National Insurance (for pensions, maternity pay, sick pay, Jobseekers Allowance), means-tested benefits (for Income
Support: depends upon savings and capital + covers basic living requirements, Working Families Tax Credit: families with
children + at least 1 partner in low-paid work receives a tax credit through workers pay packets to increase earnings, Child
Tax Credit: payment to support families with children and is dependent upon income and number of children, Child Benefit:
tax-free and paid to all mothers for each of her children up to 18) non-contributory benefits (= replaced by Social Fund, to
which you have to apply), universal benefits and discretionary benefits. Social services are financed from general taxation
and contributions by employers and workers over 16 to National Insurance Fund.
The National Health Service (NHS)
1947: originally intended to be free for those needing medical help, irrespective of income but most people fund the system
through taxes and National Insurance contributions while working. Despite increased government spending + rising health
care costs, state health expenditure in Britain is only 8,8% of GDP and lower than in other countries. Two health care levels
that work with Strategic Health Authorities to manage and improve local services:
Primary Care Trusts control 2/3 of NHS budgets at local level. 1st contact for patients, assess local needs, commission
care. Include health professionals + hospitals.
Secondary care: acute emergency + specialist care. Follows referral from doctor or primary care.
Doctors
Local NHS-funded doctor = GP (non-specialist general practitioner). Majority are members of group practices. Alternative:
NHS Direct service: seek advice from nurses on telephone.
Hospitals
NHS Trust hospitals = funded by contracts with local Primary Care Groups & self-governing. Waiting times are a big concern.
State of the NHS
Ambivalent: praised for its work as free service and achievements & criticized for inefficiency, inadequate standards,
treatment discrepancies throughout country, scandals. Rising costs and increased demand asks more finance & resources.

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Increased government spending may lead to increase in taxation. Charges could be made for some services but this goes
against the free health care principle. Combining public service with private insurance wouldnt include poor people. Labour
Government involved private sector more closely in running NHS (through Private Finance Initiatives, PFIs) + paying for
patient care in private hospitals.
Private medical sector
Private sector should be complementary to NHS. Some NHS hospitals share equipment with private hospitals and NHS
patients are treated in private sector but scale of private involvement is small.
Personal social services
State (public) sector
Provides facilities by various agencies in local community with trained staff who assist people. Organized by local
government and devolved authorities with UK government funding. Residential and medical care is free in Scotland under
devolved legislation. Care in the Community: financial and material support to families and carers looking after relatives in
their own homes, to prevent people becoming institutionalized and to give them independence. BUT: physical and sexual
abuse in childrens care homes + child deaths in family homes from neglect and abuse.
Private social services (voluntary) sector
Various care facilities but declining because of costs. Voluntary charities and agencies are complementary welfare service
to state and private facilities. Voluntary agencies have charitable status (receive tax concessions on income but dont receive
financial support from state). Oxfam (relief of famine) + Save the Children Fund are international.
Housing
Divided into public and private sectors (= majority). Public sector (social housing) controlled by Department of Environment
& devolved bodies in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, and is financed from local sources and central government &
provided by housing associations. Right-to-buy policy: local government sells off council housing to sitting tenants at below-
market prices. Construction of new publicly funded houses declines. Private sector isnt building enough low-cost properties.
House prices in London and south-east England are high, in northern England, Scotland and Wales low. Mortgage
foreclosures: when people cant afford to continue repayments on loan, lending institution takes over property
(repossession) and occupier is homeless. Variable construction standards: older houses badly built but housing quality is
improving. 20thC: town renovation + slum clearance to remove population of large city centres to new towns, usually located
in countryside, or to new council estates in suburbs but they degenerate quickly. Provision of sufficient affordable + varied
housing in Britain is a problem. There are still a lot of homeless people. Others live in squats (unoccupied houses), shelters
+ temporary accommodation. Programs and funds to combat rough sleeping (sleeping in the open) are established.
Attitudes to social services
People are concerned about public health, social services, social (council) housing and state pensions. Budget deficit in 2010
placed social services spending in sharp perspective. Public Finance Initiative (PFI) + Public-Private Partnership (PPP) which
involve private sector in provision and organization of public services, arent supported by a majority because of fears about
privatization and private control of social services. People support idea of public services funded by taxation.
Chapter 9: EDUCATION
School history
5th & 6th C: church created first schools to prepare boys for priesthood. Other schools were created by rich people and
monarchs confined to the rich. 19thC: no school system that could educate the workforce. 1870: state more actively involved
Education Act (Forster Act) created local school boards in England and Wales which financed and built elementary
schools. 1880: free and compulsory elementary schooling Balfour Act (1902) abolished school boards and made local
government responsible for state education. Secondary school organized by the independent sector and people had to pay
for it. Early 20thC: State secondary schools were extended to children whose parents couldnt afford school fees.
Education Act (Butler Act)
Reorganized state primary and secondary schools in England and Wales: state schooling became free & compulsory + divided
into 3 stages. 2 types of state school: county and voluntary. Primary and secondary schools provided by LEAs (local education
authorities) in each county. Voluntary schools founded by religious and other groups, partially financed or maintained by
LEAs. State schools have 11-plus examination. If you pass, you go to grammar school. If you fail, you go to secondary modern
or technical schools. Theres also day-release training for employers. 1964: Labour wants to abolish eleven-plus, selection
and secondary school divisions. 1970: LEAs able to choose secondary education best suited to local needs. Today: state
secondary school is selective or non-selective. Scottish schools are comprehensive. Northern Irish schools are divided into
grammars and secondary moderns. Reforms to the state school system are made by all governments.

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State school sector


Department for Education initiates overall policy in England & Wales (Wales & Northern Ireland have devolved responsibility
and Scotland has its own independent system). State schools consist of non-denominational schools, former grant-
maintained schools and voluntary (faith) schools. 3 and 4 year olds benefit from state nursery or pre-school education. To
encourage diversity in state comprehensive system secondary level state-funded privately sponsored City Technology
Colleges were established. 1999: publicly funded, part privately sponsored and managed Academies independent of LEA +
530 secondary specialist schools + intention to increase voluntary schools controlled by faiths. 2010: reforms by
Conservative/Liberal Democrat coalition: allows secondary and primary state schools to apply for Academy status with state
budgets and to opt out of LEA control. Scotland: state school system is comprehensive and non-selective. Northern Ireland:
state schools divided along religious lines and often single-sex. Selective system with examination at 11 are to be abolished.
Independent (fee-paying) school sector
In England: dependent upon its charitable and tax-exempt status (not taxed on income if used for educational purposes).
Some students have scholarships. Public schools (private schools & part of the independent schools) are mostly boarding
establishments. Entrance examination must be done to enter an independent school. Independent preparatory schools
(primary level) prepare students for independent secondary level entrance. Labour argued for abolition of independent
schools and removal of their tax and charitable status.
School organization and examinations
3 terms: autumn, spring, summer. Primary and secondary schools have numbers from 1 to 11 with a 2 year 6th form. SATS
(standard attainment tests): set to establish what children should know at 7, 11 and 14. National Curriculum in England &
Wales (similar developments in Northern Ireland, not Scotland): curriculum for primary & secondary levels standardized,
centrally devised and appropriate to demands of contemporary world. Its tied to examinations at secondary level:
General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE): taken by 16 year olds in any subject. Basic subject required for
a job are English, science and a foreign language. Minimum standard to be aimed for is 5 GCSEs at A-C grades.
Advanced Subsidiary (AS): 4 AS level subjects in 1st year of 6th form in addition to key skill tests before a
concentration on 3 A2 (A level) subjects.
General Certificate of Education at Advanced Level (GCE A level): taken by 18 year olds
Alternative examinations:
Vocational GCSE: broad-based preparation
National Vocational Qualifications (NVQs): job-specific
Scotland doesnt have statutory national curriculum. Pupils take National Qualification (NQ) at age of 16. Scottish Highers
are taken by pupils between 16-18.
Higher education
Entry after required exam results and being successful at possible interviews.
Universities
Dependent on government money (which depends on the number of students and research performance) given by
government to Universities Funding Councils for distribution. 4 types of universities:
Ancient universities of Oxford and Cambridge (13th century)
redbrick or civic universities: Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester (1850-1930)
Universities founded after 2nd World War and 1960s: York, Sussex, East Anglia
new universities (1992)
Other higher education colleges mostly have a more vocational aspect.
Student finance
Past: students with at an institution of higher education got student grant that covered tuition fees of 1st degree course +
maintenance expenses (after means-testing of parents income). 1998: abolishing of student grant. Students have to pay
upfront tuition fees for each year of their course, except in Scotland. Students are means-tested on parents income and
must provide for their own maintenance expenses through loans from Student Loan Company pay back after graduation.
Open university (1960s)
Non-residential system of distance learning intended to give opportunities to adults unable to enter higher education.
Further, adult and lifelong education
Self-governing state-funded colleges that offer vocational and academic subject at basic levels for part- and full-time
students. Provided by colleges, universities, WEA (Workers Educational Association),
Attitudes to education
State schools are not run well, more money should be spent on education and parents wishes concerning education are
not taken seriously by politicians.

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Chapter 10: MEDIA


Print media
18thC: newspapers & magazines developed, but hindered wide circulation. Literacy growth > 1870 market increased.
National newspapers
Mostly published from London and available in whole Britain. 16thC: regional newsletters. 18thC: first British newspapers
with limited national circulation. 19thC: popular national papers, inexpensive and aimed at working class. 20thC: mass-
circulation. Success of early popular press due to growing literacy & increased political awareness. Cheaper papers
modern printing methods & nationwide distribution network. Competition from digital technology. No censorship or state
control. Public receive reasonable variety of political views and coverage from newspapers. There are also online internet
versions. Main national press in Britain consists of 10 main daily morning papers + 9 main Sunday papers. National papers:
Quality: The Times, national & international news in depth + analyse current events
Popular (tabloid): The Sun, few hard news stories + superficial treatment of events
Mid-market: Daily Mail & Daily Express, for intermediate groups
Few large publishing groups. Most important: Trinity Mirror + Rupert Murdochs News International
Regional and ethnic newspapers
Focus on local or regional news but also contain national + international features. Financially supported by regional
advertising. There are daily morning or evening papers (London Evening Standard), Sundays or weeklies. There are also free
newspapers (metro=daily). Theyre free thanks to advertising. Ethnic communities also produce newspapers that are
available nationally in larger cities but many have poor publishing sites and sales.
Periodicals and magazines
Weekly, monthly or quarterly, dependent upon sales + advertising to survive. Teenage and youth magazines, men, women
Best-selling: Radio Times + Whats on TV feature stories & scheduled programmes for BBC and independent TV and radio.
Broadcast media
Public sector: British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) financed by TV license fee
Independent sector: commercial stations funded by advertising
Regulator for both: Office of Communications (Ofcom). Radio was 1st broadcast medium. 1922: national radio by John Reith
Reith 1st Director-General of BBC who had monopoly on national broadcasting. 1954: independent TV supervised by
Independent Television Authority (ITA) 2 organisations covered broadcasting (duopoly). ITA Independent Broadcasting
Authority (IBA) Independent Television Commission (ITC) Ofcom (2003). Ofcom is concerned to maintain quality of
programmes by terrestrial public service broadcasters & must provide a minimum level of different types of
programmes.80-90: more radio + TV channels.
The BBC
Based at Broadcasting House (London). Created by Royal Charter and has a Trust which is responsible for supervising
programmes and suitability. Trustees are appointed by the Crown on advice of government ministers. Daily operations are
controlled by Director-General, chosen by Trust. BBC financed by grant from Parliament, which comes from sale of TV
licenses (payable by anyone who owns a TV set) + BBC sells its programmes abroad. 1932: external services (radio
broadcasts) founded by Foreign Office (objective news reporting and programmes). 1991: commercially funded TV
programmes. BBC not controlled by government but its charter has to be renewed by Parliament so government can
intervene. BBC tries to be neutral in political matters. 2 main terrestrial TV channels + 2 satellite channels:
BBC1 (terrestrial): mass-appeal channel entertainment
BBC2 (terrestrial): more serious items
BBC3 (satellite): contemporary entertainment
BBC4 (satellite): culture and arts
BBC Radio: 5 national stations specialized in different tastes (Radio1,2,3,4, Radio Five Live) + 39 local stations.
Independent broadcasting (Office of Communications, Ofcom)
Government appointed board regulates independent TV + radio companies. Grants licenses to transmitting companies
which commission programmes shown on 3 advertising-financed terrestrial TV channels:
ITV: biggest commercial TV network. Licences granted to ITV1 (oldest TV channel) are renewable every 10 years. It
used to provide only popular programmes of light-entertainment + trivial type but now quality has improved.
Channel 4 (1982): considerable reputation for news and documentaries, art programmes and films.
Five (1997): funded by advertising, subscription and sponsorship.

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Cable TV is expanding (main provider Virgin Media). Ofcom controls independent radio (3 national stations + 150 local).
Classic FM (popular classical music + news bulletins). Virgin 1215 (rock music). Talk Radio UK (speech-based service).
Role and influence of TV
TV is very influent but there are few foreign-language productions and these are dubbed or subtitled. British TV has a high
reputation (good quality shows) but theres also a dumbing down of British TV: not very high quality shows who appeal to
mass audience (reality shows). Internet becomes an alternative.
Media ownership and freedom of expression
Newspapers: controlled & owed by corporations that are concerned with wide media interests but also non-media activities.
Only a few newspapers arent controlled by multinational and multimedia commercial concerns. Law is supposed to guard
against risks inherent concentrated ownership of means of communication. There are legal restraints upon media freedom
of expression. Sub judice rule: media may not comment on court proceedings but must restrict themselves to reporting
court facts. Obtaining & publishing of state and official info is controlled by Official Secrets Act and by D-notices (directives
to media concerning info which shouldnt be divulged). Media are liable to court proceedings for libel (making accusations
which are proved false or harmful to a persons reputation) + obscenity offences (action that offends against public
morality). Human Rights Act: allows media greater freedom of expression but also allows individuals to complain and seek
compensation if individual rights or privacy are infringed. Freedom of Information Act: might break down some of the
secrecy & executive control but doesnt work satisfactorily. Press Complaints Commission (PCC): guard freedom and
independence of press, maintain standards of journalism + judge complaints by public against newspapers.
Attitudes to the media
People are reasonably satisfied with BBC & independent broadcasters but are also skeptical of press and journalists & dont
believe that they present all sides of a question fairly.
CHAPTER 11: RELIGION
Religious history
AD 300: missionaries & monks in Ireland, who represented Gaelic Roman Catholicism from Rome, converted pagan Irish
kings. AD 432: Ireland converted by St. Patrick & monks christianity spread to Wales, Scotland and northern Ireland. AD
597: southern Scotland further influenced by Catholicism through St. Augustine (sent by Pope Gregory who founded
ecclesiastical capital Canterbury). Christianity encouraged by Anglo-Saxon kings. Southern English Christianity based on
Church of Rome. Ireland, Wales, Scotland + northern Ireland more Gaelic conflicts between 2 branches resolved at
Synod of Whitby (churches agreed to accept Catholic form of worship). 16thC: difficult relationship England-Rome Henry
VIII argued that as king he was supreme legal authority (not pope) & that church & courts owed allegiance to him Henry
broke away from Rome (pope refused Henrys divorce from Katherine of Aragon) became head of Church of England
Henry established national church (Roman Catholic) & didnt consider himself part of the Protestant Reformation Edward
VI (16thC) protestant protestant Church of Scotland Ireland remained Catholic conflicts Catholics-Protestants.
Catholic Mary Tudor (16thC) failed to restore Catholic faith protestant Elizabeth I (16thC) established Protestant
status of Church of England by Church Settlement Churchs doctrine stated in Thirty-Nine Articles of Faith forms of
worship contained in Book of Common Prayer English church = intermediate Catholicism-Protestant. 16th-17thC:
Protestants church didnt distance from Rome left & formed own religious organizations (Dissenters
Nonconformists members of Free church) tensions between forms of Protestantism also in Civil War (17thC)
between Parliamentarians-Royalists led to Protectorate of Oliver Cromwell restoration Stuart monarchy under Charles
II (collapse of Cromwells puritan regime) Roman Catholic church: persecution & exclusion after Reformation Church
of England solidified dominant position when Protestant William III succeeded James II (last king with Catholic sympathies).
18thC: reaction to rationalist developments in Church of England. 18th-19thC: reaction to Church of England & founded
Nonconformist sects. 1830s: Oxford/Tractarian Movement: emphasized Church of Englands connections with Roman
Catholicism. End 19thC: Christian & non-Christian churches scattered. 20thC: religious diversity. Evangelical movement:
branch of Christianity, basic Christian tradition but expresses in a different way. Britain has religious freedom. Monarch
must be member of Church of England. None of churches tied to political party + no religious parties in Parliament.
Christian tradition
Church of England
National church: legal position confirmed by Elizabethan Church Settlement & Parliament monarch is head
archbishops, bishops, deans appointed by monarch on advice of prime minister & Parliament has voice in organization
no state church because no public financial aid. 2 archbishops of Canterbury (Primate of All England, professional head of
church) & York, 24 senior bishops (in House of Lords, take part in proceedings & Churchs link with Parliament). Church =
divided in 2 provinces of Canterbury & York, under archbishop. Provinces subdivided in 44 dioceses, under bishop. Dioceses
divided in 13000 parishes, centred on parish church & have a priest (= vicar/rector). Main financial resources: property,
investment holdings & 3rd largest landowner. Income administered by Church Commissioners. High Church (Anglo-Catholic)

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stresses church tradition & historical influence of Roman Catholicism. Low church (Evangelical) based on simplicity & literal
interpretation of Bible suspicious of Roman Catholicism membership assumed when baptized into the church. This
may be confirmed at confirmation (age 14-15). General Synod: approved ordination of women 1994: first women
ordained = conflict 1. Non-practising may become priests = conflict 2. Church of England = Angelican: part of worldwide
communion of churches with similar practices. Lambeth Conference: meeting of Anglican bishops from all over the world,
held every 10 years in London, presided over by Archbishop of Canterbury.
Church of Scotland (= the Kirk)
2nd established Protestant Church in Britain. Separate from Church of England. Created in 1560 by John Knox because Church
of England had not moved far enough from Roman Catholicism. Calvin & developed form of Presbyterian Protestantism:
government by ordained ministers & elected elders. Church has democratic structure. General Assembly is supreme
organizational body & comprises elected ministers and elders. Presidency of elected Moderator (1 year) = leader of church.
Roman Catholic Church
Persecution + discrimination after Reformation. 7 Roman Catholic provinces in Britain under archbishop, 30 dioceses under
bishop, 3000+ parishes. Head of church = Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster. Senior lay Catholic = Duke of Norfolk. Its the
single largest Christian Church and emphasizes role of education & raise children in Catholic faith.
Free Churches
Nonconformist Protestant denominations. Dissented from the Churchs theological beliefs, but has egalitarian beliefs.
Methodist church: largest church, 1784: established by John Wesley. Based on union of separate Methodist sects
but independent Methodist churches still exist.
Baptism: grouped in associations. Most belong to Baptist Union of Great Britain (England & Wales) formed in 1812.
There are also independent Baptist unions in Scotland and Ireland.
United Reformed Church (URC): union between ancient Congregational Church in England & Wales (roots in 16thC
puritanism) + Presbyterian Church in England, Wales and Scotland + Churches of Christ. It believes in Christian unity
+ ecumenicism worldwide + multicultural perspective through Trinitarian creeds & Bible as Word of God.
Salvation Army: 1865: founded in Britain by William Booth. International Christian evangelical movement.
Emphasises saving souls through practical Christianity & social concern and its message based on Bible.
Other Christian churches
17thC: Religious Society of Friends (Quakers): Christian group but no ministers & unconventional worship meetings.
Their pacifism + social work is influential.
Enthusiastic Christian churches (Assemblies of God, Elim Pentecostal Church): independent Christian groups
characterized by Pentecostal or charismatic nature. Emphasize miraculous + spiritual side of New Testament.
Derived from US: 7th Day Adventists, Jehovahs Witnesses, Mormon Church, Christian Scientists & Spiritualists.
Immigrants have their own Christian denominations: Greek Orthodox Church
Non-Christian tradition
Jewish community
Dates from mid-17thC: composed of original Sephardim + subsequent majority Ashkenazim. Divided into majority Orthodox
faith (spokesman Chief Rabbi) + minority Reform & Liberal groups. Representative body: Board of Deputies of British Jews.
Fundamentalism is increasing.
Other non-Christian religions
Due to immigration: Islamic Culture Centre + Central Mosque in London are the largest Muslim institutions in West. 1997:
representative body: Muslim Council of Britain. Sikhs Hindus and Buddhists also active.
Cooperation among the faiths
Intolerance of Christian denominations mellowed. Discussions Roman Catholic Church other Christian churches.
Churches Together in Britain and Ireland has representatives from main Christian churches. Works towards common action
& Christian unity. Free Church Federal Council has similar job for Free churches. Anglican & main Free churches participate
in World Council of Churches: promote worldwide cooperation. Council of Christian and Jews: better understanding among
members. Council for Churches of Britain and Ireland established Committee for Relations with People of Other (non-
Christian) Faiths. Inter Faith Network UK: 100 organizations, promotes good relationships between different faiths.
Religion in schools
Non-denominational Christian religious education is compulsory in state primary & secondary schools in England and Wales.
School day starts with collective worship. Religious services & teaching not compulsory in Scotland. Religion-based schools
at primary & secondary levels (faith-schools) are funded by state and emphasize the particular faith of the school.
Independent religious schools are not funded by state.

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Religious identification
Declining membership of Christian churches. Expansion in Free churches, new or independent religious movements, non-
Christian denominations. Difficult to obtain info about religious membership since denominations have their own methods
of assessing membership and attendance.
Attitudes to religion and morality
3 opposed positions:
Falling levels of involvement with main Christian churches + general decline in religious faith.
Religious renewal in some churches + growth because of religious pluralism and diversity of faiths.
Formal membership of denomination & observance no longer popular but people still have religious beliefs.
Religious denominations prominent in British life & active in education, voluntary social work and community care. Lacking
traditional faith in conventional religion, more people trust in materialism, trends, celebrities. Some people believe in
mysticism, telepathy, astrology. Many Britons embrace authoritarian position on some questions of morals + social
behaviour. On other matters, theres a growing liberalism.

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