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The rhetoric of 'New Labour' has captured the centre ground of British politics and now frames the policy making agenda of all mainstream political parties. In linking this rhetoric to the impact of key New Labour policies on everyday life, this interdisciplinary and original book provides a timely focus on the language of contemporary political debate that assesses its practical effects and potential limitations. The chapters are written by specialist contributors from linguistics, law, education, health, sociology and politics who examine the ways in which the New Labour discourse of social justice has played out in their policy area. Many draw on original empirical research, including interviews, and the book's combination of micro and macro level analyses supports incisive and original thinking 'outside the box' of orthodox political thought. The contributors differ in their assessment of New Labour policies. Taken together, however, their chapters reveal serious problems with New Labour's rhetoric of social justice and its associated language of citizen workers, choice, opportunity, responsibility and empowerment. -- .
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Table of Contents

Introduction. Valerie Bryson and Pamela Fisher 1 New Labour, Social Justice and Electoral Strategy. Tim Heppell 2 'Radicalisation' and 'democracy' - a linguistic analysis of rhetorical change. Lesley Jeffries 3 Multiculturalism and the emergence of 'community cohesion'. Paul Thomas 4 Class and Individualisation within post compulsory Education and training. James Avis 5 Social justice and time: the impact of public sector reform on the work of midwives in the National Health Service (NHS). Valerie Bryson and Ruth Deery 6 Promoting social justice, perpetuating social injustice? New Labour and disabled people. Anne Chappell and Chris Gifford 7 An alternative model for social justice and empowerment from the perspective of families with disabled children. Pamela Fisher 8 New Labour and Northern Ireland: delivering peace, prosperity and social justice? Catherine McGlynn and James W. McAuley 9 Colonising law for the poor: access to justice in the new regulatory state. Peter Sanderson and Hilary Sommerlad Findings and conclusions. Valerie Bryson and Pamela Fisher -- .

About the Author

Valerie Bryson is Professor of Politics at the University of Huddersfield Pamela Fisher is Senior Lecturer in Sociology at the University of Huddersfield

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