From “Old Corruption” to the New Corruption? Public Life and Public Service in Britain, c. 1780–1940

Event Details

  • Event date: 24/01/2019 – 25/01/2019
  • Venue: Oxford Brookes University
  • CFP Deadline: 27/07/2018

The aim of the conference is to encourage a more integrated approach to the study and conceptualisation of political and administrative corruption during the period when Britain became a mass democracy and open up new historical perspectives through which we might better grasp the present.

Papers (of 20 mins in length) might include discussion of, but are not limited to, the following subjects:

  • Conceptualising and historicising “corruption” over the long-term
  • Britain and the British Empire in comparative perspective: cultures of corruption and trajectories of reform
  • Conceptions of public service and corruption: office as private property and office as public trust
  • Patronage, privilege and salaried service in Whitehall and Westminster: from the Northcote -Trevelyan Report (1854) to the payment of MPs (1911)
  • Public and private interests: ministerial and official corruption and scandal
  • The business of politics: party financing, party managers and the practice of mass elections
  • Class and corruption: aristocracy, plutocracy and democracy
  • Corrupt practices and the reform of local government: “Civic Gospels” and “Tammany Halls”
  • The role of the national and provincial press in exposing corruption
  • Representing and imagining corruption: images, narratives, conspiracies

Expressions of interest to: and

These should include: a brief ‘bio’ (detailing institution, publications, research interests, etc.) and a proposal/abstract (of roughly 300 words).

For more information please download the full CFP here or alternatively visit the conference website.

This will be a two day conference: 24–25 January 2019, held at Oxford Brookes University and is supported by Newman University, Birmingham, and the History and Policy Unit, King’s College, London.