Account For The Rise Of The Labour — страница 3

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also reminds us, however, in his analysis of the politics of these years, how fluid the political situation then was; with a three-party system operating within an electorate which had swelled enormously since 1914, and many of whose members had had no experience of voting before. The Liberal decline was therefore, he suggests, ‘a more contingent matter than the statistics suggest and was not contained in the pre-war situation’. The 1923 election figures show that at the time the two parties enjoyed roughly equal support but any advantages that the Liberals had were thrown away, principally by the disastrous mistakes of the party leaders in their dealings with the Labour Party and the first Labour Government. The result was seen at the general election of 1924 when the number

of Liberals in the House dropped from 159 to 42. `After 1924 the Labour Party had once and for all displaced the Liberal Party as the second party in the state, and therefore became the only possible alternative to the Conservatives. This was still in the 1930s despite the failures of the second Labour Government and the crisis of 1931. The 1935 general election, by eliminating the Liberals almost completely as an effective force in British politics, at last brought to an end the peculiar love-hate relationship between the two radical parties that had listed since 1900 and marked the return once again to two-party politics. `Bibliography ` `<:s><:#284,9360>Taylor English History 1914-45 `<:#284,9360>Cole & Postgate The Common People `<:#284,9360>Pearce

Britain: Domestic Politics `<:#284,9360>Adelman The Rise of the Labour Party `<:#284,9360>Adelman The Decline of the Liberal Party `<:#284,9360>Hopkins A Social History of the English Working Classes 369