Big Tent Politics: A Conversation with R. Kenneth Carty

Big Tent Politics: A Conversation with R. Kenneth Carty

Categories: Lectures and Seminars


Monday, January 18, 2016

7:00 PM - 8:30 PM

608 Robertson Hall

1125 Colonel By Dr, Ottawa, ON

Contact Information

Scott Pruysers, 2777,


Limited - Register Now



About this Event

Host Organization: Department of Political Science

The Bell Chair in Canadian Parliamentary Democracy Presents:

Big Tent Politics: A Conversation with R. Kenneth Carty.
Ken Carty will be discussing his recently published book Big Tent Politics: The Liberal Party's Long Mastery of Canada's Public Life.

The Liberal Party of Canada is one of the most successful parties in the democratic world. It dominated Canadian politics for a century, practising an inclusive style of "big tent" politics that allowed it to fend off opponents on both the left and right. How did it do this? What kind of party organization did it build over the decades to manage its remarkable string of election victories?

This book traces the record of the party over the twentieth century, revealing the cyclical character of its success and charting its capacity to respond to change. It also unwraps Liberal practices and organization to reveal the party’s distinctive "brokerage" approach to politics as well as a franchise-style structure that tied local grassroots supporters to the national leadership. These were key elements of the winning formula that drew Canadians of all political stripes to the Liberal Party over the years.

Ken Carty is Professor Emeritus of Political Science at the University of British Columbia and a former Brenda & David McLean Chair in Canadian Studies (2005-08). He served as Head of the Department (1996-2001, 2006-07) and Director of the Centre for the Study of Democratic Institutions (2007-09). During 2005 he was a Distinguished Scholar in Residence at the Peter Wall Institute of Advanced Studies.

Discussant: Lawrence Martin, Public Affairs Columnist with the Globe and Mail.

Register For this Event

90 spaces capacity, 3 spot(s) left.