Politics (Canadian Edition): An Introduction to the Modern Democratic State, Fourth Edition

Politics (Canadian Edition): An Introduction to the Modern Democratic State, Fourth Edition

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By Larry Johnston
University of Toronto Press, Higher Education Division © 2012
World Rights
416 Pages
ISBN 9781442605336
Published Nov 2012
ISBN 9781442608788
Published Nov 2012
ebook (EPUB format)
ISBN 9781442605350
Published Nov 2012
Full purchase $61.95

The latest edition of Politics offers a comprehensive and comparative approach to the essential components of democratic politics in today's states. The book begins by addressing ways of thinking about politics, community, and society, offering broad outlines of political theory in a historical context. Johnston then provides a comparative framework for understanding basic democratic systems which is drawn upon in subsequent sections on institutions, the political process, and governing. The result is an accessible introduction to contemporary democratic politics that is also deeply theoretical and comparative in scope.

The fourth edition has been revised throughout and rewritten with a more focused narrative. The student-friendly design incorporates more visuals and sidebars, as well as chapter objectives and a glossary, in order to make the material easily digestible. In addition, a new companion website provides self-study support for students along with a wealth of materials for instructors to draw from when developing lectures, tutorials, assignments, and exams.

See www.johnstonpolitics.com for more information.

Larry Johnston is the author of Ideologies: An Analytic and Conceptual Approach (1996) and Between Transcendence and Nihilism (1995). A legislative researcher in Toronto since 1998, he was an academic consultant to the Ontario Citizens' Assembly on Electoral Reform in 2006. He has taught a variety of politics courses at the University of Toronto, McMaster University, and Ryerson University.
List of Figures

Introduction: The Dimensions of Politics and an Approach to its Study

What Politics Is...
A Comparative Approach

Chapter 1: Co-operation, Coercion, and Consent—Opening Ideas

Our Social Nature
Authority and Leadership
Civil Society
Beyond the State
Further Reading

Chapter 2: The Many Ways of Studying Politics

Politics as Philosophy
Politics as Social Science
Units of Analysis: Individual, Group, or Class?
Politics as Anthropology
Back to Bismarck: Politics and the Study of Politics
Further Reading

Chapter 3: From The Republic to the Liberal Republic: History and Ideas

Classical Antiquity
Feudal Society (the Medieval Era)
The Reformation
The Enlightenment
The Market Economy
Political Revolution
Liberal Government
Philosophical Works
Further Reading

Chapter 4: The Fall and Reluctant Rise of Democracy

Democracy Defined
Distrust of Democracy
From Liberal Government to Liberal Democracy
Assessing Representative Democracy
Democracy's Prospects
Consolidating Democracy
Further Reading

Chapter 5: Roadmap to the Rest (A Comparative Framework)

Who's In and Who's Out
Functions, Institutions, Systems
Functions, Institutions, Systems
Functions, Institutions, Systems
The Judiciary as a Branch of Government
Bicameralism—Do Two Houses Make a Home?
Degrees of Federalism
Electoral and Party Systems
Type of Government
Appendix: Comparative Data Set
Further Reading

Chapter 6: Systems of Government: Parliamentary Options

Components of Parliamentary Government
Majority, Minority, or Coalition
The Government-Formation Process
The Conclusion of a Government and Its Implications
A Closer Look at Coalition Government
Cabinets: Size and Structure
Executive Dominance
Further Reading

Chapter 7: Systems of Government (2): Degrees of Presidentialism

Madisonian Presidentialism
Coalitional Presidentialism in Latin America
An Exceptional Case: Switzerland
Further Reading

Chapter 8: Dividing the State: Federalism and Other Options

Unitary, Federal, Confederal
Components of Federalism
Asymmetrical Federalism
Amending Formula
Non-federal Options
Further Reading

Chapter 9: Who Wants What? The Political Process

Social Cleavages
Ideology: The Role of Ideas
Further Reading

Chapter 10: Who Gets In? The Machinery of Democratic Elections

What Is an Electoral System?
Criteria for Evaluating Electoral Systems
Electoral Systems Considered
Electoral Administration
Further Readings
Appendix: Electoral System Data

Chapter 11: Who is Heard? Varieties of Representation

Political Parties
Party Systems
Election Campaigns
Organized Interests
Social Movements
Further Readings

Chapter 12: The Official Response: Public Policy and Administration

Two Theories about Public Policy
Who Does What: Examining the Policy Cycle
Types of Policy
The Bureaucracy
Further Reading

Chapter 13: The Rule of Law in Practice: The Justice System

The Nature of Law
The Legislative Process
Direct Democracy
Private Law
Administrative Law
Court Systems
Judicial Review
Automatic Justice?
Further Reading

Chapter 14: Governing in an Age of Decline? Social and Economic Policy

The Nature of Capitalist Market Society
Classic Liberalism and Laissez-faire
Models versus Reality
The Reform of Market Capitalism
The Welfare State
The Age of Deficit and Debt
Going Forward
Further Reading
Appendix: Economic Statistics

With timely examples and data, and exemplary conceptual illustrations, the fourth edition offers a solid foundation in the discipline, making it a 'keeper' for beginning scholars.

Carol Dauda, University of Guelph

I strongly recommend [this book] to anyone who wants an engaging theoretical introduction to the study of politics.

Jonathan Rose, Queen's University

The fourth edition of Politics maintains the unique theoretical scope and depth of previous editions, while presenting the material in a cleaner and more accessible manner. An excellent introduction to the discipline of political science.

James Farney, University of Regina