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Westminster scandals and the problem of corruption, c. 1880–1914
Tom Crook

relation to what came before, or to analyse what they might tell us about the shifting contours of corruption as a mutable, if persistent, problem of public life. The implicit suggestion seems to be that, with the passing of Old Corruption, established reforming impulses naturally sought out new manifestations of corruption, as if pursuing a linear trajectory of mounting intolerance. Standards were raised

in The many lives of corruption
The reform of public life in modern Britain, 1750–1950
Editors: Ian Cawood and Tom Crook

The many lives of corruption begins the task of piecing together the bigger picture of how corruption has undermined public life in modern Britain. It offers a uniquely expansive perspective, which stretches from the Old Corruption and ‘unreformed’ politics of the eighteenth century through to the mass democracy and welfare state of the twentieth.

Conceptually, as an object of thought, as much as practicably, and as an object of reform, corruption has proved tenaciously problematic and protean. This volume engages with both of these crucial aspects, arguing that it is only by grasping them together that we can fully understand how corruption has shaped the making of a democratic-capitalist state in Britain and given rise to new ideals of public service. It examines the factors that have facilitated and frustrated anticorruption reforms, as well as the various ways ‘corruption’ has been conceived by historical agents. It does so across a range of different sites – electoral, political and administrative, domestic and colonial – presenting new research on neglected areas of reform, while revisiting well-known scandals and corrupt practices. The many lives of corruption is essential reading for all scholars interested in understanding how the pursuit of purity in British public life has evolved over the past two and a half centuries – and why corruption remains such a pressing issue today.

Editor: Julian Hoppit

In 1660 the four nations of the British Isles were governed by one imperial crown but by three parliaments. The abolition of the Scottish and Irish Parliaments in 1707 and 1800 created a United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland centred upon the Westminster legislature. This book takes state formation. A number of important points emerge, however, the book deals with three. The first and most obvious point is that the unions were limited in scope and were palpably not incorporating . The second point is that, depending upon the issue, parliament required or encouraged not only different arguments but different voices. The final conclusion to emerge from these essays is that utility of 'national identity' as a way of understanding how people in the period conceived of themselves and their relationship to the state is not as clear and certain as might be first thought. National identity was one amongst a number of geo-political communities people might belong to, albeit a very important one. Inasmuch as the Westminster parliament provided a forum in which debates about how to legislate for three kingdoms took place, in its own way it helped to reinforce awareness of that difference. Liverpool petitions allow us to explore the intersection between policy debate and imperial identity during a pivotal era in the evolution of the British Empire. After 1832, virtual representation, though it survived in many different ways, became associated in the colonial context with nabobs and planters, the very demons of 'old Corruption'.

Alex Middleton

Trust in the British state was at a low ebb in the decades after the Napoleonic wars. Denunciations of Old Corruption, institutional sclerosis and unpatriotic leadership became central to the landscape of public politics, at both elite and popular levels. 1 Historians have explored the overlapping critiques levelled against the management of domestic and foreign

in The many lives of corruption
Abstract only
Tom Scriven

outlined in this study highlights the ambitions for wholesale reform integral to working-​class political activism during the early-​Victorian period. Chartism’s incorporation of the infidel, Owenite, and Radical traditions made it far more than simply a protest against ‘Old Corruption’. Chartism is not part of a continuous Liberal tradition that has stretched into the twenty-​first century and which limits its objectives to political reform and half-​hearted attempts to relieve suffering. Chartists saw the Charter as the political starting point of widespread economic

in Popular virtue
Economical reform and the regulation of the East India Company, 1765–84
Ben Gilding

East India Company have placed less emphasis on its metropolitan dimensions than the activities of its employees overseas, works on domestic politics and political corruption in the late eighteenth century have tended either to marginalise or ignore the role of the Company. 5 Highlighting the movements against Old Corruption, they have shed light on debates concerning the burgeoning influence of the

in The many lives of corruption
Corruption and economical reform in Jamaica, 1783–91
Aaron Graham

Between 1781 and 1793 the British government embarked on a programme of what contemporaries called ‘economical reform’, which aimed to address problems of political and administrative corruption revealed by successive defeats in the American Revolutionary War. It triggered a process that would, arguably, root out entrenched, Old Corruption from the British political system

in The many lives of corruption
Abstract only
Zoë Laidlaw

society published since the 1980s. New perspectives on patronage, government centralisation, ‘Old Corruption’, the political sphere, evangelicalism, statistics and the ‘classifying imagination’ are all amenable to incorporation into conceptions of nineteenth-century empire. 8 Since 2000, several works have attempted to reconcile these understandings of British society with colonial activity, while

in Colonial connections, 1815–45
Author: Stephen Miller

Feudalism, venality, and revolution is about the political and social order revealed by the monarchy’s most ambitious effort to reform its institutions, the introduction of participatory assemblies at all levels of the government. It should draw the attention of anyone interested in the sort of social and political conditions that predisposed people to make the French Revolution. In particular, according to Alexis de Tocqueville’s influential work on the Old Regime and the French Revolution, royal centralization had so weakened the feudal power of the nobles that their remaining privileges became glaringly intolerable to commoners. Feudalism, venality, and revolution challenges this theory by showing that when Louis XVI convened assemblies of landowners in the late 1770s and 1780s to discuss policies needed to resolve the budgetary crisis, he faced widespread opposition from lords and office holders. These elites regarded the assemblies as a challenge to their hereditary power over commoners. The monarchy incorporated an administration of seigneurial jurisdictions and venal offices. Lordships and offices upheld inequality on behalf of the nobility and bred the discontent evident in the French Revolution. These findings will alter the way scholars think about the Old Regime society and state and should therefore find a large market among graduate students and professors of European history.

Abstract only
Corruption and the reform of public life in modern Britain
Ian Cawood and Tom Crook

, have mutated in step with the successes and limitations of reform. It has hampered, too, our ability to situate what remains, without doubt, the best-known feature of this period – the demise of so-called ‘Old Corruption’ – in a richer, more comprehensive context, and to think again about how and where this took place, and what came after. In sum, the aim of this volume is not to assess whether

in The many lives of corruption