The Politics of the Culture Wars in Contemporary Britain
This report examines the cultural and political beliefs of a sample of 1818 British adults surveyed by YouGov between 9 and 11 May 2022. Links to the questions and crosstabulations can be found here. Its focus is on mapping the views of the wider public on a variety of diverse subjects often classified together under the banner of ‘culture wars’, including views on race, gender free speech, heritage and diversity. It also investigates whether individuals have been exposed to certain concepts or practices, for example through workplace diversity training.
The study finds that the British public leans approximately 2 to 1 against the ‘cultural leftist’ position, or ‘woke’, position across 20 culture wars issues, though there are significant variations based on age, gender and political affiliation. It shows that Voters under 35 are signifcantly more likely to endorse the cultural leftist view on culture wars issues, with opinion evenly divided on some of these questions; with regards to political affiliation, it finds that cancel culture issues split the far left from the centre left, centre and right, and that Critical Race Theory-themed issues pertaining to heritage and history strongly mobilise the right and centre while fragmenting the left.