Post-War Changes in the Influence of Social Structure on Australian Voting: The 'Decline of Social Cleavages' Revisited
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This is an electronic version of an article published in: Charnock, David (2005) Post-War Changes in the Influence of Social Structure on Australian Voting: The 'Decline of Social Cleavages' Revisited, Australian Journal of Political Science 40:343-355.
Australian Journal of Political Science is available online at: http://www.informaworld.com
Franklin, Mackie and Valen?s 1992 book on Electoral Change drew on evidence taken from a small number of surveys in each included country (including Australia) during the mid-1960s to 1990 to derive some general conclusions about the historical decline of cleavage politics. In this article, I make some methodological improvements and also considerably chronologically extend the analyses for Australia, to cover the whole of the post-war period. The results show that some of the previous conclusions are incorrect and that although there has been a decline in the strength of association between social structural variables and voting for the ALP over the post-war period, the decline has not been a smooth one and predominantly occurred in the earlier part of the period. I also discuss the results in the context of broader international debates about the impact of social changes on voting.
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