The Legacy of Thatcherism: Assessing and Exploring Thatcherite Social and Economic Policies

ISBN : 9780197265703

Stephen Farrall; Colin Hay
260 Pages
157 x 234 mm
Pub date
Feb 2014
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Three decades after the election of Margaret Thatcher as Prime Minister, it is perhaps time to take stock of the concept of 'Thatcherism' and the prominent role it has played in the history of post-war Britain. Of course, there is much debate about what Thatcherism actually was or is. Some commentators argue that Thatcherism was more noteworthy for its rhetoric than for its achievements. The welfare state, for example, emerged little changed after eleven years of Thatcherism. Some historians additionally suggest that other social forces that existed prior to Thatcher will outlast her. Yet, whichever way one looks at it, the Thatcherite project of the 1980s brought about a fundamental reorganisation of much of the UK's social and economic life. Did Thatcherite policies dramatically alter the trajectory of the country's development? Can even long-term and seemingly enduring path dependencies be altered as dramatically as claimed?. Ought Thatcher's period in office be seen as a 'critical juncture' for the UK? This book brings together a range of experts in housing, economics, law and order, education, welfare, families, geography and politics to discuss the enduring legacy of those social and economic policies initiated by the first of the UK's New Right governments (1979-1990).


1. Interrogating and Conceptualising the Legacy of Thatcherism
2. The Thatcherite Economic Legacy
Commentary: The Long Run Economic Consequences of Mrs Thatcher
3. What were the lasting effects of Thatcher's Legacy for Social Security? The Burial of Beveridge?
Commentary: What were the lasting effects of Thatcher's legacy for social security? A Commentary
4. The Legacy of Thatcherism for Education Policies: Markets, Managerialism and Malice (towards Teachers)
Commentary: English Passions: Thatcherism and Schooling
5. The Housing Legacy of Thatcherism
Commentary: Thatcherism and housing policy: a commentary
6. What were the lasting effects of Thatcher's Legacy for Families in the UK?
Commentary: Women, the Family and Contemporary Conservative Party Politics: From Thatcher to Cameron
7. Thatcherism and Crime: The Beast that Never Roared?
Commentary: Thatcherism and Crime: The Beast that Never Roared?: A Commentary
8. Mapping the Thatcherite Legacy: The human geography of social inequality in Britain since the 1970s
Commentary: Mrs Thatcher's iniquitous geographies: why spatial dynamics matter
9. 'Don't cut down the tall poppies': Thatcherism and the Strategy of Inequality
Commentary: Inequality, its persistence and its costs
10. Locating 'Thatcherism' in the 'here and now'

About the author: 

Stephen Farrall is Professor of Criminology and Director of the Centre for Criminological Research at the University of Sheffield. Previous monographs of his include: Godfrey, B., Cox, D. and Farrall, S. (2011) Serious Criminals: A Historical Study of Habitual Criminals, Clarendon Studies in Criminology, Oxford University Press and Farrall, S., Jackson, J. and Gray, E. (2009) Social Order and the Fear of Crime in Contemporary Times, Clarendon Studies in Criminology, Oxford University Press. He is currently continuing to research the Thatcherite influence on crime with Will Jennings, Colin Hay and Emily Gray (funded by the ESRC). ; Colin Hay is Professor of Government and Comparative Public Policy at Sciences Po, Paris and an Affiliate Professor of Political Analysis at the University of Sheffield where he co-founded the Sheffield Political Economy Research Institute. He is the author of a number of books including, most recently, The Failure of Anglo-Liberal Capitalism (Palgrave 2013) and The Political Economy of European Welfare Capitalism (Palgrave 2012, with Daniel Wincott). He is editor or co-editor of the journals New Political Economy, Comparative European Politics and British Politics.

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