What does Political Science mean to me?
Published 27 Mar 2017
A simple definition of political science would be the study of the process of governance and the relations between the government and the populace. It is the study of politics and the description of the various political happenings and behaviors. To understand this held view of political science as a field of study, it is important to look at what it centers mostly on; politics. A proper definition of politics revolves around the allocation of power and resources. A common held view of politics is the process of making the key decision of who gets what and when. Politics is all about power.
Max Weber defined power “as the chance of a man or a number of men to realize their own will in a communal action even against the resistance of others who are participating in the action” (Bealey et al 14) .My understanding of power would also have a similar undertone. It is the ability to do what one wants in a particular situation even when faced with insurmountable opposition from a section of the populace. The ability to carry out a decision, however popular or unpopular it maybe could be a proper indicator of power.
The allocation of this power and the decision of how this power is to be shared out or the general decision of who is to be the ruler is politics.The study of this process of allocation of power between the ruler and the ruled is the broad subject of political science. The study of politics and the various processes would also include taking a closer look at the various forms of governments, concepts such as democracy, sovereignty and legitimacy. These are related concepts that shed a light on politics and the various factors that would impede on power allocation. Political science hence is the study of all these processes of power allocation between the government and its citizenry. It also involves an analyses and description of the various political events and behaviors
- Frank Bealey, Richard A. Chapman, Michael Sheehan. Elements in Political Science. Edinburgh University Press. 1999; 14