Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

Durham University: Riots and Roughs: The Violent Origins of English Electoral Democracy

24 October 2022 @ 18:00 - 19:30

From: Dr. Patrick M Kuhn (PI), Proff. Gidon Cohen and Nick Vivyan and Drs. Luke Blaxill, Gary Hutchison

We would like to invite you to ‘Riots and Roughs: The Violent Origins of English Electoral Democracy’ for an evening of electoral violence and local history. 

Britain’s electoral development has not always been peaceful. Nineteenth-century elections were, in fact, often extremely violent affairs, much more violent than commonly believed. Our team of Political Scientists and Historians from Durham University have been investigating the causes and consequences of electoral violence in England and Wales. Their database of violent election incidents and interactive map reveals the true extent of bribery, intimidation, and aggression, which characterised Britain’s democratic processes in the nineteenth century. Now, they invite you to come and explore your locality’s own dubious relationship with democracy. 

Join us, on Monday 24 October from 18.00 – online or in person – at Durham University’s Teaching and Learning Centre (Room TLC033; parking is available at the Durham Park & Ride Howlands less than ½ mile south of the venue), where Dr. Patrick M Kuhn and his colleagues will introduce you to the dark side of democracy. Together we will explore the surprisingly violent history of elections in England and Wales, taking a close-up look at some of our more amusing and disturbing finds. Patrick will demonstrate how our interactive map works and highlight opportunities for local historians to refine and contribute to this resource, which we aim to continuously update and improve. We are also eager to learn what information we might be able to share from our research to enrich and support your work.

For any secondary school history or citizenship teachers, there will also be a separate presentation to introduce you to our free educational material (KS3/4) designed to aid the teaching of democracy in schools. Those who can join us in person will then have the opportunity to chat with our researchers and explore their local area’s history of electoral violence, using our interactive map for themselves with a glass (or two!) of wine.  

This event is free to all, but booking is necessary whether you plan to attend online or in person. Booking closes on 20 October (in-person) and on 23 October (online). Just click here to sign up.         

We look forward to seeing you on 24th at Durham University’s Teaching & Learning Centre! 

All the best, 

The 19th-Century Election Violence Project Team 


24 October 2022
18:00 - 19:30


Durham University