This book is a series of 'remarks' and 'sketches', which together form a mosaic to show how the use of the referendum followed a strict, almost Hegelian pattern of the 'unfolding of freedom' throughout the ages. It outlines how referendums have been used in Britain and abroad, presenting some of the arguments for and against this institution. The book commences with an outline of the world history of the referendum from the French Revolution to the present day, and then discusses the British experience up to 2010. The book examines the referendum on European Economic Community membership in 1975, considering the alternative vote referendum in 2011 and the referendum on Scottish independence in 2014. Next, the United Kingdom European Union membership referendum in 2016, especially the campaign leading up to it, is discussed. After the analysis of the Brexit referendum, the book touches on the Maltese referendum on divorce in 2011. It summarises some of the trends and tendencies in the use of the referendum internationally, highlighting that Britain is not a unique case in holding referendums. The book shows that, notwithstanding the general assumptions about referendums, these are not usually associated with demagogues and populism, but the referendum has tended to be used as a constitutional safeguard. However, in Britain, a country without a formal written constitution, these safeguards were not in place. For the referendum to work, for this institution to be a constitutional safeguard, it must be a people's shield and not the government's sword.
the trends and tendencies in the use of the referendum internationally. As this overview suggests, Britain is not a unique case in holding referendums. The chapter shows that, notwithstanding the general assumptions about referendums, these are not usually associated with demagogues and populism, but the referendum has tended to be used as a constitutionalsafeguard. However, in Britain, a country without a formal written constitution, these safeguards were not in place. Consequently, a leader like David Cameron was able to use the referendum for party
Identity is often regarded as something that is possessed by individuals, states, and other agents. In this edited collection, identity is explored across a range of approaches and under-explored case studies with a view to making visible its fractured, contingent, and dynamic features. The book brings together themes of belonging and exclusion, identity formation and fragmentation. It also examines how identity functions in discourse, and the effects it produces, both materially and in ideational terms. Taking in case studies from Asia-Pacific, Europe, the Middle East and Latin America, the various chapters interrogate identity through formal governing mechanisms, popular culture and place. These studies demonstrate the complex and fluid nature of identity and identity practices, as well as implications for theorising identity.
The British monarchy in Australia, New Zealand and Canada, 1991–2016
Gone, too, was any pretence that the royal family could be seen as the
paragon of family values or moral rectitude, while outside of Britain
itself, the concept of the welfare monarchy no longer had meaning. The
once widely held view that the monarch’s role was to provide
leadership beyond politics by acting as a constitutionalsafeguard was
demolished in 2001. Sir William Heseltine, Assistant Private Secretary
continuing in Du Contrat Social and Lettres, Rousseau
pointed to the veto-power of the ordinary citizens as a bulwark against
radical changes enacted or proposed by over-eager lawmakers. Recognising
that the veto-power of the people – such as it existed in Rome – at all
times have been viewed with ‘alarm by the leaders’ (‘ont été de tous temps
l’horreur des chefs’) (III: 428), Rousseau believed that the rulers’ opposition
to the veto-power of the people was the best proof of the efficiency of this
system as a constitutionalsafeguard (428). Far from advocating direct
of the electors’ (Dicey 1981 : cix).
Why have referendums been used as a constitutionalsafeguard? Why have politicians allowed this? One reason could be a greater tendency towards judicial activism? For example, in Ireland – a country with almost annual referendums – the Supreme Court’s intervention in the 1980s has meant that a large number of relatively mundane issues have been submitted to the voters (Crotty v An Taoiseach, IESC, 9 April 1987). But constitutional referendums have not been confined to countries with activist courts. They have also been
effect on prosperity and policy outcomes.
Traditionally the referendum was used but in exceptional
circumstances 12 . It was
a mechanism reserved for momentous constitutional change; a bulwark
against radical and irreversible constitutional
change. But in more recent years, the referendum has become more than a
constitutionalsafeguard 13 .
The traditional system of “party
law. By June 1957 the Commissioners assembled for the third conference
were again focusing their attention upon security and riot control, but
questions of constitutionalsafeguards for the police and the creation
of Police Service Commissions were also then prominent on the agenda. 44
In their day-to-day work, the police were profoundly
affected by the increased emphasis given to matters of
As administrator of the occupied territory the Occupying
Power is responsible for the maintenance of public order and
Political laws like those concerning elections, and constitutionalsafeguards such as Habeas Corpus, cease to apply, as do laws
constituting a threat to the security of the occupation, such as those
relating to recruitment or the bearing of arms. However, the
confined for indefinite periods and subjected to conditions so harsh that they violate international law as well as U.S. constitutionalsafeguards. 42 Actions amounting to torture continue to be practised within these institutions. Systematic humiliation, the use of dogs to intimidate, sleep deprivation, and physical brutality are frequently experienced by prisoners. The fact that many of the abusers at Abu Ghraib were former guards in civilian life is no coincidence. In a letter written to his family in 2003, Staff Sgt. Ivan Frederick, one of the perpetrators of the