Chapter 1 Lecture Notes

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University of British Columbia
Political Science
POLI 100
Christopher Erickson

CHAPTER 1 NOTES The State WHAT IS THE STATEMax Weber 18641920 o The state exercises a monopoly of the legitimate use of force in enforcing its order within a given territorial areaSovereignty the highest form of authority within a given territoryBUT what about failed states where the government is incapable of asserting its rule A TYPOLOGY OF STATESNightwatchman or minimal state o The government concentrates ensuring law and orderDevelopmental state o Governments act in partnership with private industry in order to ensure rapid economic developmentSocial democratic state o Tries to secure goals such as equality of opportunity through state intervention in areas like educationAll these models are compatible with liberal democracy However there are other forms of states too Other forms of stateIlliberal democracieso Elections are held but they are usually not meaningful and the state does not make it a priority to guarantee rights and liberties eg MalaysiaAuthoritarian states o Elections are not free or fair opposition parties are either banned or subjected to severe limitations eg RussiaOne party states o Elections only take place between candidates from the same party the state and the government are indistinguishable eg ChinaTotalitarian states o The government tries to extinguish all sources of opposition and to control the whole of society eg Soviet Russia Nazi Germany Theories of the State
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