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POLB91H3 (73)
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University of Toronto Scarborough
Political Science
R Rice

POLB91H3 COMPARATIVE POLITICS RRICE 1252012 105600 AM Comparative Politics what is itIt is a subfield in political science and a method or approach to the study of politicsA SUBFIELD EX Canadian Politics US Politics Opinions and attitudes in different political systemsObjective is to make a generalization of politics from comparing different systemTwo Complete Schools of Thoughto 1 Behavioralists scholars that emphasize statistical analysis universal theory complex mathematics They examine a large number of cases or by using complex mathematical equations Quantitative SchoolWhy countries go to war Political economic data to prove questions large scale quantitative analysis o 2Interpretivists scholars that emphasize an indepth analysis of politics within a few cases paying attention to specific country contents They look at a few cases specific contexts they are the qualitative school Trend is towards this type of school Area Studies within Comparative PoliticsA detailed examination of politics within a specific geographical setting not necessarily involving comparisons o Study their whole life in Mexico they specialize in Mexico Quantitative school says how do you learn the world from just looking at one countryGlobal Trends larger theories is more importantIs the field of area studies still relevant today Comparative Politics Yesneed grounded specialized info Need to look how local politics affect global politics You cannot just rely on local government statistics you need a reliable source from a person who specializes in that geographical area Diversity of the experience in the global southNo Because those who specialize just are in their own box they dont really work together as international forces to diffuse their knowledge and hwo they affect each other They just do their own thing and specialize only on what they know They dont learn anything else or want to join with other thoughts Contagion effect only comes from diffusing and bringing information from diverse areas together You miss that if you specializeEthnic conflictif you want to understand this you would have to step back and see the bigger picture Historical background of conflict universal studiesSpecializing You may not only have to know how to do statistics and various other research methods but you must know the culture and languageMETHOD OF COMPARATIVE POLITICS1 Most Similar System Designs The study of differences across similarities You select two or more countries similar in all respects except for the phenomenon being investigated It gives you leverage Ex Why do indigenous tribes ariseEquadorBoliviaPeru o Similarities Andes large indigenous populations across weak party systems all colonized by spain and economically dependant they are neighbours same size same history same geographic sizeo If Peru didnt have indigenous tribes arising then we can cross off all the similarities and study only the one factor Its because they have a strong Marxist tradition Weak Marxist in Bolivia and Equator Peru people say they are peasants classbased they wont say they are a tribe They like to be grouped so that tells us why there are no tribes arising 2 Most Different Systems Approach More Complicated The study of similarities across differences select 2 or more countries different in most respects except for the phenomonen under investigation
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