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British Parliamentary and Electoral Politics, 1688-1832
 
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Any analysis of print culture should consider the reach, audience and reception of the printed word. National literacy rates were steadily rising throughout the 18th century. By 1800 around 60% of men and 30% of women were signing their own names in marriage registers although there were wide regional variations. Literacy can be measured in a m ...…
 
This lecture considers the impact of the French Revolution on parliamentary politics in the 18th century – the broader context will be evaluated in the next lecture.
 
Events in France did much to revive the fortunes of the reform movement after it had declined in the mid 1780s and hostile reactions to the course the revolution was taking stimulated the rapid growth of militant loyalism as public opinion turned against the radicals. The French revolution did produce some changes: * movement spread further dow ...…
 
The fall of Pitt in 1801 after his failure to carry through a measure of Catholic Emancipation brought the Foxites back to Westminster.The political stalemate that had characterised the years 1794-1801 was evaporating with the fall of Pitt.A new opposition group emerged after the loss of Pitt based around Lord Grenville and William Windham oppo ...…
 
Historians have emphasised the unsavoury nature of electoral politics in the decades before 1832. Four charges were levelled at the electoral system by these critics * that very few voters were free to vote as they wished * the electorate was thoroughly venal and regarded the vote as a piece of personal property upon which they expected to make ...…
 
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