Lords of parliament

Manners, rituals and politics

By Emma Crewe

Lords of parliament

Book Information

  • Format: Paperback
  • ISBN: 978-0-7190-7207-9
  • Pages: 272
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Price: £15.99
  • Published Date: September 2005
  • BIC Category: Society & social sciences / Political structure & processes, Society & social sciences / Politics & government, POLITICAL SCIENCE / American Government / Legislative Branch, Central / national / federal government, Politics & government, United States of America, USA, Politics


This is the only anthropological book about the British Parliament. It marks the first time a researcher has had almost untrammelled access, and every significant aspect of the Upper Chamber has been inquired into. The result is a unique portrait, packed with the unexpected, of a surprising institution which is becoming increasingly influential. Meticulous scholarship is combined with clarity in explanation to produce a work that helps to bridge the gap between anthropology and political science.

Political science scholars and students, and those in related fields, as well as anthropologists, will find it of interest, as will many general readers curious about politics.


1. Background to the House of Lords: An outline of composition, powers and culture
2. Kind words and coronets
3. Performing like a Peer
4. Restless natives
5. A social directory
6. Hierarchies
7. Are Peers equal?
8. Parties and cross-benchers
9. The usual channels
10. Rules and rituals
11. Men in tights
12. Opening up Parliament
1. A chronology of reform of the Lords 1998-2004
2. Research methodology
3. Glossary


Emma Crewe is a Research Associate at the University of Warwick, an Honorary Research Fellow at the Department of Anthropology, University College London, and a research and policy consultant working in Asia and Africa

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