PolB91H3: Comparative Politics All Lectures (Midterm)

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Published on 17 Feb 2012
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POLB91H3- COMPARATIVE POLITICS
R.RICE 01/25/2012
Comparative Politics: what is it?
It is a sub-field in political science and a method or approach to the
study of politics.
A.) SUB-FIELD: EX: Canadian Politics, US Politics
Opinions and attitudes in different political systems
Objective is to make a generalization of politics from comparing
different system
Two Complete Schools of Thought:
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 School
Why countries go to war? Political, economic data to
prove questions, large scale quantitative analysis.
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2.)Interpretivists: scholars that emphasize an in-depth
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 Politics
A detailed examination of politics within a specific geographical
setting not necessarily involving comparisons.
Study their whole life in Mexico, they specialize in Mexico.
Quantitative school says how do you learn the world
from just looking at one country.
Global Trends, larger theories is more important.
*Is the field of area studies still relevant today? Comparative Politics?
Yes:need 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
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experience in the global south.
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Document Summary

It is a sub-field in political science and a method or approach to the study of politics. Sub-field: ex: canadian politics, us politics: opinions and attitudes in different political systems, objective is to make a generalization of politics from comparing different system, two complete schools of thought: Behavioralists: scholars that emphasize statistical analysis, universal theory, complex mathematics. They examine a large number of cases or by using complex mathematical equations. Political, economic data to prove questions, large scale quantitative analysis. (cid:149) (cid:149) (cid:149) (cid:149) (cid:149) (cid:149) )interpretivists: scholars that emphasize an in-depth 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 politics: a detailed examination of politics within a specific geographical setting not necessarily involving comparisons. Study their whole life in mexico, they specialize in mexico.

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