The formation of British attitudes towards the Common Market: 1957–72

Kenny, John (2022) The formation of British attitudes towards the Common Market: 1957–72. JCMS: Journal of Common Market Studies.

PDF (J of Common Market Studies - 2022 - Kenny - The Formation of British Attitudes towards the Common Market 1957 72) - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.

Download (466kB) | Preview


This paper uses an extensive collection of historical surveys that have only recently been made available to researchers to examine the formation of British attitudes towards the then European Economic Community. It demonstrates that – up until 1967 – the demographic predictors of support for UK membership were unstable. Thereafter, coinciding with the second UK application, these attitudes started to stabilise and harden, with support becoming highest among men, the youngest age cohorts, the middle class and those with greater education. The renewed politicization of the issue in 1967 also coincided with Labour voters becoming significantly more likely to support membership. Following the change in the parties' positions, Labour voters subsequently become substantially less supportive than Conversative voters. The paper thus supports existing analyses on the role of elite cues, while providing new, robust evidence of the change in demographic associations over this formative period.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: attitudes,britain,elites,european economic community,public opinion
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Science > School of Environmental Sciences
Depositing User: LivePure Connector
Date Deposited: 13 Jul 2022 09:30
Last Modified: 27 Jul 2022 00:24
DOI: 10.1111/jcms.13381

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item