Skip to content
Register Sign in Wishlist

Identity, Diversity and the Reshaping of British Politics

$12.99 (T)

  • Date Published: November 2020
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781108461900

$ 12.99 (T)

Add to cart Add to wishlist

Other available formats:
Hardback, eBook

Looking for an examination copy?

If you are interested in the title for your course we can consider offering an examination copy. To register your interest please contact providing details of the course you are teaching.

Product filter button
About the Authors
  • Long-term social and demographic changes - and the conflicts they create - continue to transform British politics. In this accessible and authoritative book Sobolewska and Ford show how deep the roots of this polarisation and volatility run, drawing out decades of educational expansion and rising ethnic diversity as key drivers in the emergence of new divides within the British electorate over immigration, identity and diversity. They argue that choices made by political parties from the New Labour era onwards have mobilised these divisions into politics, first through conflicts over immigration, then through conflicts over the European Union, culminating in the 2016 EU referendum. Providing a comprehensive and far-reaching view of a country in turmoil, Brexitland explains how and why this happened, for students, researchers, and anyone who wants to better understand the remarkable political times in which we live.

    • An accessible account of the political history and social trends that led to Brexit
    • Provides a detailed worked analysis of how identity conflicts have influenced party competition in Britain
    • Extends the analysis of the 2016 referendum to the wider electoral context
    Read more

    Reviews & endorsements

    ‘Whether we like it or not, we are all living in Brexitland. In forensic detail, Sobolewska and Ford plot the long road of social change which led us here. En route, they look ahead to where the UK’s explosive culture wars could take us next. Essential reading for those not wearing blinkers.’ Adam Boulton, Sky News

    ‘Maria Sobolewska and Robert Ford have produced the best account I have read of our cultural civil wars. The work is not just an explanation of the way we live now, but of how we reached a state of institutionalised rage and why peace will be so hard to find.’ Nick Cohen, The Spectator and The Observer

    ‘Brexitland brilliantly unpicks the old and new forces that shaped our brittle political age. Who is exploiting the anger? And is it with us for good? A fascinating and convincing study: essential reading for anyone wanting to understand why tolerance of the other side in British politics seems to have disappeared. How did our political battleground turn so ugly and intolerant? Brexitland delves deep into decades of history and attitudes to race and ethnic identity to answer that question, and does it with style. Sobolewska and Ford have written the new political bible of our times: how did we stop debating and start shouting? Can normal service resume? Brexitland is a razor-sharp and compelling answer to those questions.’ Gary Gibbon, Channel 4 News

    ‘A brilliant, original, powerful book. For Remainers, Brexiters or indeed anyone interested in why divided Britain cut itself adrift from the EU, this is unmissable. It is also totally riveting.’ Toby Helm, The Observer

    ‘A sharp, accessible investigation of the key fault lines of modern British politics: education, immigration, age and identity.’ Helen Lewis, author of Difficult Women

    'A brilliant bit of academic research, but written in a way that you or I can understand very easily.' Stephen Bush, Big Issue

    'A highly acute and insightful analysis, making telling use of extensive research, which induces the reader to think afresh about the political landscape we now find ourselves in and how we arrived here.' Andrew Rawnsley, The Observer

    'A sweeping and rigorous demographic and attitudinal study of recent British history.' William Davies, London Review of Books

    See more reviews

    Customer reviews

    Not yet reviewed

    Be the first to review

    Review was not posted due to profanity


    , create a review

    (If you're not , sign out)

    Please enter the right captcha value
    Please enter a star rating.
    Your review must be a minimum of 12 words.

    How do you rate this item?


    Product details

    • Date Published: November 2020
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781108461900
    • length: 408 pages
    • dimensions: 215 x 138 x 25 mm
    • weight: 0.52kg
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction: how Britain became Brexitland
    2. Social change, ehnocentrism and the emergence of new identity divides
    3. Divided over diversity: identity conservatives and identity liberals
    4. Legacies of empire: Commonwealth immigration and the historical roots of identity politics divides
    5. The long divorce: parties and voters parting ways
    6. The identity conservative insurgency and the rise of UKIP
    7: Change without recovery: how the coalition catalysed Labour's demographic transformation
    8. Brexitland awakened: identity politics and the EU referendum
    9. Dancing to a different tune: identity politics and political change in Scotland 2007–19
    10. Brexitland after Brexit: the electoral fallout from the EU referendum
    11. Conclusion: the new politics of Brexitland.

  • Resources for


    Maria Sobolewska, Robert Ford

    General Resources

    Find resources associated with this title

    Type Name Unlocked * Format Size

    Showing of

    Back to top

    This title is supported by one or more locked resources. Access to locked resources is granted exclusively by Cambridge University Press to instructors whose faculty status has been verified. To gain access to locked resources, instructors should sign in to or register for a Cambridge user account.

    Please use locked resources responsibly and exercise your professional discretion when choosing how you share these materials with your students. Other instructors may wish to use locked resources for assessment purposes and their usefulness is undermined when the source files (for example, solution manuals or test banks) are shared online or via social networks.

    Supplementary resources are subject to copyright. Instructors are permitted to view, print or download these resources for use in their teaching, but may not change them or use them for commercial gain.

    If you are having problems accessing these resources please contact

  • Authors

    Maria Sobolewska, University of Manchester
    Maria Sobolewska FRSA is a Professor of Political Science, and Deputy Director of the Cathie Marsh Institute for Social Research, at the University of Manchester, and a Specialist Adviser to a House of Lords Select Committee on electoral registration. She is co-author of The Political Integration of Ethnic Minorities in Britain (2013).

    Robert Ford, University of Manchester
    Robert Ford FRSA is Professor of Political Science at the University of Manchester. He is an expert on immigration, public opinion, and party politics in Britain. His first book, Revolt on the Right (2013), was named Political Book of the Year in 2015. He writes regularly on British electoral politics for national and international media outlets.

Sorry, this resource is locked

Please register or sign in to request access. If you are having problems accessing these resources please email

Register Sign in
Please note that this file is password protected. You will be asked to input your password on the next screen.

» Proceed

You are now leaving the Cambridge University Press website. Your eBook purchase and download will be completed by our partner Please see the permission section of the catalogue page for details of the print & copy limits on our eBooks.

Continue ×

Continue ×

Continue ×
warning icon

Turn stock notifications on?

You must be signed in to your Cambridge account to turn product stock notifications on or off.

Sign in Create a Cambridge account arrow icon

Find content that relates to you

Join us online

This site uses cookies to improve your experience. Read more Close

Are you sure you want to delete your account?

This cannot be undone.


Thank you for your feedback which will help us improve our service.

If you requested a response, we will make sure to get back to you shortly.

Please fill in the required fields in your feedback submission.