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This is the long-awaited fourth edition of this hugely popular textbook offers a uniquely comprehensive and illuminating introduction to government and politics in Britain today. Set against the turbulent background of a world in economic, ideological and religious flux, the book analyses key developments in twenty-first-century British politics - from the collapse of the longest-serving Labour government to the challenges posed by coalition politics and the decline of public trust in the ruling class. At the heart of the analysis is the issue of power: What is it and who has it? Fully revised and updated throughout, its 24 chapters explore issues at the cutting edge of political change and debate in Britain, including: challenges to the unity of the UK and increasing uncertainty over its world role; Disillusionment with traditional politics; changing patterns of political communication; identity crises within the political parties; threats facing the traditional institutions of government; and tensions posed by austerity, social unrest and a growing gap between rich and poor. Each chapter concludes with a summary, a set of key terms and concepts, questions for discussion, weblinks, and a guide to further reading, plus suggestions for novels, plays and films that will mix the business of study with pleasure and illustrate how politics affects most aspects of our lives. Widely acknowledged for its sharply critical edge and capacity to enthuse students, Government and Politics in Britain goes beyond mere facts to challenge conventional orthodoxies. Blending penetrating analysis with a witty and thought-provoking style, it will be essential reading for all students new to this fascinating and important subject.