Politics: is the study of state and activity of person involved with the state I. E government. It refers to the current problems of state and government , the actual process of co-operation , conflict and competition for power in society. Science: is the systematic study of the structure and behavior of the physical and natural world through observation, evidence and experiment. Political Science: is the branch of knowledge that deals with systematic study of the structure and behavior of the state and political institutions through scientific analysis.
It is an academic discipline concerned with man’s official institutions and activities, such as the state , government, citizenship, public affairs etc. In other words , it is a social science concerned with the theory, description, analysis and prediction of political behavior , political activities, political system as a whole. MEANING The term ‘Political Science’ consists of two words ,biz , political and science. The word ‘politics’ is derived from the Greek word ‘Polis’ which means the city-state. In ancient Greece, the basic unit of political organization was the city-state.
It was the Greeks who first embarked upon the study of state as extinct from the church. The foundations of political thinking were laid by the great Greek philosophers, Socrates, Plato and Aristotle. Plato was the author of the book ‘The Republic’. Aristotle the father of political science, firstly used the term ‘politics’ and converted the subject into an academic discipline. He published his book ‘Politics’ as a first systematic study of politics. And natural world through observation, evidence and experiment.
So political science is the branch of knowledge that deals with systematic study of the structure and behavior of the state and political institutions through scientific analysis. Politics refers to the subject matter of our study , science denotes the methodology or the way of studying the process of politics. The first term seeks to answer the question ” what is studied” and the second term refers to ” how is it studied”. Therefore, the political phenomenon which should be studied in accordance with a definite plan or system is called political science. Age 5 Definitions of Political Science It is difficult to give a precise definition to political science , because of its varying scope in different situations. Let us examine some of those definitions. Paul Janet – “Political science is that part of science which treats of the foundations of state and the principles of government”. H. J Leakiest”.
“The study of politics concerns itself with the life of man in relation to organized Lawless- “political science is the study of shaping and sharing of power. David Gaston-“Poetical science is the study of the authoritative allocation of values for a society. Political Science begins and ends with the state” – Garner “Political Science deals with government only/’ – Lacked Science Of polis Aristotle Science of state Settle Politics deals with government Locke General problem of state and government Gilchrest Politics is shaping and sharing of power Dhal Authoritative allocation of values – Gaston Politics is the struggle for and use of power – Amenorrhea From the above definitions we may conclude that the ‘state’ is the central theme of Political Science. It is the study about the state , its origin, its nature, its structure, its functions and so on.
Modern political scientists have also emphasized the element of power in the study of the subject. Abraham Kaplan, Harold. D. Lawless defined politics as the “study of shaping and sharing of power’. It suggests that struggle for power is the subject matter of the study of politics. Since this struggle takes place at all levels- domestic ,local ,regional, national and international -? politics becomes an universal activity. Robert A Dahl uses the term ‘political system’ instead of ‘politics’ and he defined it as any persistent pattern of human relationships that involves to a significant extent, control, influence power or authority.
So the study of political science or politics include not only state and government but also an enquiry into the struggles for power that takes place t all levels beginning from the household to the world at large. Hence a comprehensive view of the subject of political science involves every thing connected with the life of man in the process of making himself. NATURE OF political science is still growing and developing subject. So there is no uniformity among political thinkers regarding the nature of political science , whether it should be treated as a science or not.
Aristotle, the father of political science, considered it as the master science. Political philosophers like Boding, Hobbes, Blumenthal, Bryce also held the view that political science is silence. Page 6 But some other political scientists reject the scientific nature of political science. It is said that in political science there is no uniform principles on laws which are universally valid. Human behavior is unpredictable. It, therefore, does not supply sufficient materials for scientific study.
The essence of the scientific method is that it will not accept generalizations unless they are based on facts which can be verified. Political scientists like Buckle and Comet deny the claim of political science as a science. The reality is that, a social science is different from natural science or a hysterical science. Science is the systematic study of the structure and behavior of the physical and natural world through observation, evidence and experiment. It is the body of true knowledge acquired through scientific process. But in social science we cannot expect so much accuracy and precision as we see in science subjects.
Hundred percentage prediction is not possible in social science because it deals with the behavior of man and his political institutions.. There is only remote chance for verification and prediction in this subjects. While in the study of political phenomena , we can ply scientific method and tools. Scope of Political science Now a days, it is very difficult to determine the precise and definite boundaries of political science. It is wide and comprehensive subject and there is no uniformity among political scientists about its scope.
It is the study of organizations and activities of the state, both at national and international levels. It also deals with the distribution of governing power among several agencies by which the actions of the state are determined, expressed, and exercised and with the problems of international life. Yet some of the important subjects in the scope of political science are given below:l . Political Science is the Study of State and Government. In the political science we study about the theoretical, structural and behavioral aspects of organization and forms of state and government.
Blumenthal says ” political science is a science which is concerned with the state endeavourers to understand and comprehend the state in its essential nature, various forms, manifestations and development. ” According to Robinson the purpose Of political science is to throw light on political ideas and political actions so that he government of man may be improved”. The government is the agency of the state through which the purpose of the state is realized. It is the most lively and integral part of the state.
According to Paul Janet “political science is that part of social science which treats of the foundation of state and the principles of the Government”. 2. It is the study of Relationship between the man and the state. The scope of Political science also includes a study of the nature of relationship between the individual and the state. The process of men with the society is an important aspects of political science. The state remunerates certain rights and liberties to its citizens and at the same time impose certain reasonable restrictions on them. In fact, state exists for the welfare of the people.
As an agent of the state, it is the function of the government to try to secure welfare for all who live within the territorial boundary of the state. Again the government of any state greatly influenced by the thoughts and ideas of that state. Therefore, the study about the state and government is bounded to be inconclusive without the study of the nature of the people who constitute the state. It is in this connection Max Webber has stated that lattice science is a descriptive and normative science and describes it as the study of human behavior in the process of enquiry of justice. Page 7 3. Study of Political Theory.
The theories are the results of the thoughts and research of many scholars and exponents of political science. Political scientists formulate various political concepts and establish theories. According to Settle , ” political science is concerned with the historical survey of origin, development of political theories and ideals, the analysis of the fundamental nature of the state, its organization, relation to he individuals that compose it and its relation to other states It is the study of the fundamental questions of the state , government, politics, liberty, justice, property, rights , law, the enforcement of legal code by authority etc.
It may be subdivided into political philosophy, legal political theory, the concept of sovereignty and legal controls for the exercise of political power, scientific political theory , consisting of empirical observations of political events etc. So a student of political science must start his study of the subject with the theories. 4. Study of political institutions. Political Science is also concerned with the study of political institutions and associations through with the state acts.
It covers the study of the constitutions, comparative government, public administration and local government etc. .At also deals with the nature of different political institutions including government, their structure such as legislature, executive and judiciary, its working its merits and demerits etc. Further it studies about some informal groups like social, economic, educational institutions in a society. 5. Study of political dynamics. Political dynamics examines the current forces which exert influence on the government and politics.
Along with the change of habits also are bound to Occur Of men, social system also change. This explains why the city States Of ancient times are replaced by the nation states in the present century. The search for the cause of this kind of changes in the character of the state and government is the study of political dynamics. It covers a wide range and includes the study of political parties, public opinion pressure groups, lobbies , etc. The study of these political dynamics helps to explain the political behavior of individuals and different groups. . A study of International relations, international organizations and international law. Political science deals with the matters relating to the maintenance of international relations, the international law and the organization concerned with the maintenance of world peace and security. The human society is now thinking in terms of forming a world government in the near future. International law provides the framework within which the states should enjoy their rights and duties.
This has made it necessary to include in the study of political science. It is related to the maintenance of international relations and different organizations connected with the maintenances of peace and security among the states of the world. The subject matter includes international law, international and regional organizations like NUN, European Union, NAME, SCAR and League of Nations, diplomatic relations , treaties and agreements, arms control, human rights, pollution control and global warming , sustainable development etc. . Study of political parties and related organizations. Page 8 In a democratic state, political parties play an important role in formation and injunction of government. They are regarded as an unavoidable and central part for the successful working of democratic political system.
Its studies are important for understanding the nature and working of political institutions of a county. The study of political science is also concerned with the study of informal institutions through which the state acts . IEEE. Erasure groups ,interests groups and other related social, economic, educational institutions etc. 8. It studies of Past, Present and Future development of State The scope of Political Science includes the study of the past , present and future of states ND its activities. According to Settle , ” In the historical aspects, Political Science deals with the origin of the state and the development of political theories in the in dealing with the present it attempts to describe and classify existing political institutions and ideas.
Political Science also look to the future, to improving political organizations and activities in the light of changing conditions and changing ethical standards”. So its scope is not restricted to the study of the past and the present alone , but it directs future course of the development of the state. The study is also helpful to improving he political institutions and modifying political activities in order to meet the changing national and international demands.