Essentials of Comparative Politics- O'Neil Flashcards

Terms Definitions
the ability of states to carry out actions or policies within a territory independently from external actors or internal rivals
organizations or activities that are self-perpetuating and valued for their own sake
the struggle in any group for power that will give one or more persons the ability to make decisions for the larger group
the study and comparison of domestic politics across countries
comparative politics
the means by which social scientists make comparisons across cases
comparative method
Gathering of statistical data across a large number of countries in order to look for correlations and test hypotheses about cause and effect. Emphasis on breadth over depth.
quantitative method
Mastery of a limited number of cases through the detailed study of their history, language, and culture. Emphasis on depth over breadth.
qualitative method
The study of how to govern
This person first separated the study of politics from that of philosophy; used comparative method to study Greek city-states; in "The Politics," conceived of an empirical study of politics with a practical purpose
(384-322 BC)
Often cited as the first modern political scientist because of his emphasis on statecraft and empirical knowledge; analyzed different political system, believing the findings could be applied by statesmen; discussed his theories in "The Prince."
Niccoló Machiavelli
Developed a notion of a "social contract," whereby people surrender certain liberties in favor of order; advocated a powerful state in Leviathan
Thomas Hobbes
Argued that private property is essential to individual freedom and prosperity; advocated a weak state in his "Two Treatises of Government"
John Locke
Studied government system; advocated the separation of powers within government in "The Spirit of Laws"
Charles Louis de Secondat, Baron de Montesquieu
Argued that citizens' rights are inalienable and cannot be taken away by the state; influenced the development of civil rights; discussed these ideas in "The Social Contract"
Jean-Jacques Rousseau
Elaborated a theory of economic development and inequality in his book "Das Kapital;" predicted the eventual collapse of capitalism and democracy
Karl Marx
Wrote widely on such topics as bureaucracy, forms of authority, and the impact of culture on economic and political development; developed many of these themes in "Economy and Society."
Max Weber
A theory asserting that as societies developed, they would take on a set of common characteristics, including democracy and capitalism
modernization theory
A movement within political science during the 1950's and 1960's to develop general theories about individual political behavior that could be applied across all countries
Emphasis on describing political systems and their various institutions
traditional approach
The shift from a descriptive study of politics to one that emphasizes causality, explanation, and prediction; places greater emphasis on the political behavior of individuals as opposed to larger political structures and on quantitative over qualitative m
behavioral revolution
Rejection of a grand theory of politics; criticism of modernization theory as biased and inaccurate; diversity of methods and political approaches, emphasizing such issues as gender, culture, environment, and globalization
The ability of an individual to act independently, without fear of restriction or punishment by the state or other individuals or groups in society
A shared material standard of individuals within a community, society, or country
(1) The organization that maintains a monopoly of force over a given territory
(2) A set of political institutions to generate and execute policy regarding freedom and equality
The fundamental rules and norms of politics, embodying long-term goals regarding individual freedom and collective equality, where power would reside, and the use of that power
The leadership or elite in charge of running the state
Term used to refer to state, government, regime, and the people who live within the political system
A value whereby an institution is accepted by the public as right and proper, thus giving it authority and power
Built by habit and custom over time, stressing history; strongly institutionalized
Traditional Legitimacy
Built on the force of ideas and the presence of the leader; weakly institutionalized
Charismatic Legitimacy
Built on rules and procedures and the offices that create and enforce those rules; strongly institutionalized
Rational-legal legitimacy
A system in which significant state powers, such as taxation, lawmaking, and security, are devolved to regional or local bodies
A state in which most political power exists at the national level, with limited local authority
unitary states
A state that is able to fulfill basic tasks, such as defending territory, making and enforcing rules, collecting taxes, and managing the economy
strong states
A state that has difficulty fulfilling basic tasks, such as defending territory, making and enforcing rules, collecting taxes, and managing the economy
weak states
A state so weak that its political structures collapse, leading to anarchy and violence
failed states
The ability of the state to wield power to carry out basic tasks, such as defending territory, making and enforcing rules, collecting taxes, and managing the economy
The ability of the state to wield its power independently of the public
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