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congruence theory

congruence theory - 1 Wesley Murphy Shanruo Ning Zhang...

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Wesley Murphy Shanruo Ning Zhang Political Science 328 3/1/10 Congruence Theory Congruence theory argues that a political system works the best when the institutions and structures of a state are in congruence with the political culture. The “governments will perform well to the extent that their authority patterns are congruent with the authority patterns of other units of society.” 1 Patterns of authority is the process by which people are directed, it is how the government interacts with society. Congruence can be defined as isomorphism (sameness of form). This congruence depends on the type of social relationships that impact the government. Some have greater influence than others do; such as a political party having greater influence than a celebrity would. In order to have congruence it “requires resemblance among adjacent social units—units that impinge on government or one another directly and significantly,” (Eckstein). Congruence exists if a government’s authority of all its citizens is similar. The new world political culture “will be a political culture of participation.” 2 This participatory political system needs a political culture that is consistent with it; political culture is used to determine the relationships between political and nonpolitical 1 1 Eckstein, Harry, Congruence Theory Explained , www.democ.uci.edu/publications/papersseriespre2001.harry2.html (1997). 2 2 Gabriel A. Almond and Sidney Verba, The Civic Culture: Political Attitudes and Democracy in Five Nations (Sage Publications, 1989 [1963]. 1
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attitudes. Political culture refers to a nation rather than a nations character or personality; it is spoken of just as we would discuss economic culture or religious culture.
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