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POLB91H3 (73)
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POLB91_LECTURE 2_Outline.doc

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Department
Political Science
Course
POLB91H3
Professor
R Rice
Semester
Winter

Description
LECTURE 2: Concepts in Comparative Analysis OUTLINE: I. What and how does Comparative Politics Compare? II. Themes for Comparative Analysis III. Concepts for Comparative Analysis _______________________________________________________________________ _ I. What and How Does Comparative Politics Compare? Comparative Politics is: a) a sub-field within the discipline of political science – systematic study of similarities and differences • Behavioralists o Scholars that emphasize statistical analysis and universal theories by examining a large number of cases or complex mathematical equations o Quantitative school o Arthur something data was collected from NY Times • Interpretivists o School that emphasizes indepth analysis of politics within a few cases, paying attention to specific country contexts  Eg. Hall and Tarrow o Qualitative school • Area Studies o Detailed examination of politics within a specific geographical setting not necessarily involving any explicit comparison  Eg. Hall and Tarrow disagree with cutting area studies funds • Is the field of area studies still relevant for politics and development studies today? • Yes: o grounded knowledge o Detail specific o Better policy making o Empirical knowledge for testing theory o Case studies to test the theory o Canada’s relationship with other countries • No: o International forces key to understanding domestic outcomes o Theory porductin is ultimate goal; look at global process = better indicator b) a method or approach to the study of politics • Most Similar Systems Design o Logic between your cases. The study of differences across similarities o Select 2 or more countries similar in most respects except for phenomenon being explained o Eg. Ecuador, Bolivia and Peru  trying to understand indigenous movement formation  Similarities – all of them were colonized by the Spanish  Have weak party system  Massive inequalities  Large indigenous population  Differences -- PERU Strong history of Marxist mobilization • Analytic leverage  what are the important factors (?) not sure* • Most Different Systems Design o Study of similarities across different o Select 2 or more countries that are different in most respects except for phenomenon under investigation o Eliminate differences o Eg. El Salvador vs South Africa  Transition to democracy by massive population uprising  rare usually democracy is implemented through elite pacts II. Themes for Comparative Analysis a) Democratization a. Some of the poorest countries transitioned to democracy i. South America more authoritative democracy  can see there is still despotic power there b. Puzzle = what is the relationship between democracy and political stability? c. Key = look for stabilizing and destabilizing of recent democratic transitions and persistence of undemocratic elements in the new democracy b) The Role of the State a. Puzzle = how do states in developing countries/world deal with many challenges to _____ authority from both internal and external forces. i. Facing pressure to reform ( freemarket, democracy, capitalism etc) ii. Pressure from internal civil society to change different way b. Key = pay attention to the way states react to these pressures c) The Politics of Collective Identity (Rice’s research) a. Non Class issues are huge in the global south eg. gender issues i. We tend to focus on class based issues b. Puzzle = how does collective identity affect a countries distributional politics? Being the process of deci
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