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Poli Sci 101- Textbook Notes.docx

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University of Alberta
Political Science
POL S101
Satish Joshi

Mehreen Nadeem Satish Joshi – 2nd Y Fall Political Science 101 – Textbook Notes Green = definition Blue = people Purple = examples Red = IMPORTANT Headings for lists Chapter 1 pg 3 Chapter Objectives 1. Discuss the importance of politics 2. Define the concepts of power, authority and legitimacy 3. Discuss whether seeking the common good is a meaningful goal of political life 4. Explain the difference between the empirical and normative analyses of politics Basic Concepts - no universally accepted definitions for many concepts in politics, power and the common good o depends on your perspective Politics - politics o a feature of all organized human activity o political scientists view study of politics to include relationships involving power o poli sci focuses on decisions relating to governing of political community o "authoritative allocation of values for a society" (how good are distributed)  suggests that allocation tends to bind person in community o BOOK definition: activity related to influencing, making, or implementing collection decision for a political community Power pg 5 - Power: the ability to achieve an objective by influencing the behavior of others, particularly to get them to do what they would not have done otherwise o relationship between individuals and groups Mehreen Nadeem Satish Joshi – 2nd Y Fall - 3 Types of power 1. Coercion fear / threats 2. Inducement offer reward / bribe 3. Persuasion / Manipulation persuade them 4. Leadership countries convince others to follow them - does NOT mean one dominantes the other - politics involves bargaining and negotiation o type of bargain reflects difference in power among parties to bargain - power can be exercised through control of the political agenda o the issues that are considered important and given priority in political deliberations - those who are able to shape the dominant ideas in society --> have long term effect on that society's politics o if dominant ideas oppose those of minority, causing weaker groups to act against their own true interests --> power exercised in indirect manner The 3 Faces of Power 1st face Ability to affect decisions 2nd face Ability to ensure that issues are not raised 3rd face Ability to affect the dominant ideas of society The distribution of power pg 9 - political power of different groups a product of their skill in mobilizing resources - political institutions set up to advantage / disadvantage certain groups The positive and Negatives Sides of Power pg 10 - Power thought of in terms of: Mehreen Nadeem Satish Joshi – 2nd Y Fall o people having power OVER groups o authority power to achieve goals o development - Free rider problem: A problem with voluntary collective action that results because an individual can enjoy the benefits of group action without contributing o ex. taxes? Authority and Legitimacy - Authority: the right to exercise power that is accepted by those being governed as legitimate - Legitimacy: acceptance by the members of a political community that those in positions of authority have the right to govern Establishing and maintaining legitimacy - Max Weber's 3 classifications of authority o charismatic authority leader has supernatural qualities o traditional authority o legal-rational authority  Weber thought the goal of governing = maintaining public order - legitimacy can be reduced if there is long term pattern of mistreatment by government - government authorities will have a higher level of legitimacy if their actions are perceived as being consistent with the general values of the political community - if system of governing established without consent of people (EVEN if democratic) = illegitimate The
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