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The Nature of Politics

The Nature of Politics - Opposites of politics •...

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The Nature of Politics What is Politics? Deal with human relationships Activities associated with public decisions (things that happen within a political community). Aristotle- man is a political animal = people have to deal with one another Who gets what, when, and how? Politics is all about decision making The authoritative allocation of values. Made with the agreement of people. These decisions are then backed up by authoritative and coercive means Conflict Among Groups Over Interests: rights or claims. Conflict of interest = politics Values: things of worth. Not necessarily monetary. The art of the Possible Conflicting interests must be weighed Conflicting values must be balanced Politics of compromise Consensus Common interests (taxes not overwhelmingly high) Need for order (government needs to protect citizens) Moderated conflict Agreement on justice (society needs to be just)
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Unformatted text preview: Opposites of politics • Pluralism (overlapping memberships, competing interests) • Communalism (political identity defined exclusively by ethnicity, religion, language) Little interaction between religious groups in Romania Historical Memories • Used to understand yourself in context • Stories passed along from generation to generation • Provide identity and unity for the ethnic or national group Common Memories • Positive: Enforce feelings of commitment to the group • Negative: Enforce feelings of alienation from other groups Anti-Politics • Eschewing cooperative forms of behavior. Lack of compromising and problem solving • Getting even and nursing a grudge • A politics of violence A Politics of Forgiveness • Politics of accommodation and forgetting • Common interests- better to live in community that in a state of war • Not cynicism but participation...
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