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The Political Integration of Ethnic Minorities in Britain$
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Anthony F. Heath, Stephen D. Fisher, Gemma Rosenblatt, David Sanders, and Maria Sobolewska

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199656639

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199656639.001.0001

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(p.105) 6 Partisanship
The Political Integration of Ethnic Minorities in Britain

Anthony F. Heath

Stephen D. Fisher

Gemma Rosenblatt

David Sanders

Maria Sobolewska

Oxford University Press

In striking contrast to results from some other countries such as the USA, Britain’s ethnic minorities are just as likely as their white British fellow-citizens to identify with a political party—overwhelmingly the Labour Party. Minorities continue to show much higher levels of party identification with Labour than does the rest of the electorate, while the black groups show even higher levels of Labour partisanship than do South Asian groups. These differences cannot be explained by differences in socio-economic status or ideology. The remarkable level of Labour allegiance can best be explained by enduring collective norms, feelings of fraternal relative deprivation and group processes leading to ethnic group contextual effects. These ethnic group contextual effects seem to be stronger for those with greater ethnic group bonding social capital.

Keywords:   Party identification, fraternal relative deprivation, group processes, contextual effects, ethnic group contextual effects, social capital

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