Political Science

what’s political science


It is concerned with the theoretical explanation of Political reality, namely the phenomenon of the State. It attempts to discuss the forms of political organization and the logical justification of the state. That studies the relationship between the state and the individual. ( Political Science )

Political Science found its first systematic exposition in the writings of Greek Philosophers. Plato (427 347 B.C) and Aristotle (384-322 B.C) were the two early Greek Political philosophers who made far-reaching and lasting contributions in the field of Political Science. In the famous book the Republic, Plato justified the moral significance of the state, its organic unity, its educational functions, and above all its supremacy over the individuals. Aristotle is said to be the intellectual child of Plato and in his famous book Politics. he first developed a systematic study of Political Science as an independent academic discipline.

Aristotle is the Father of Political Science, because of his far-reaching and permanent contributions in the field of Political Science. Plato’s Academy and Aristotle’s Lyceum were the schools that aimed at preparing the future administrators, constitutional experts, and rulers of the Hellenic City-States. The Greeks were the first People who developed Political Science in its pure and systematic form. Subsequently, it spread over all other countries and its study has assumed greater importance in modern times.

Etymologically the term Political Science or Politics has derived from the Greek word Polis, which means the city-state or the state. This deals with the problems of the city or the state in which men live. we can define it as the study of the activities of the state.



This deals with the associations of human beings that form Political units with the organization of their government. With the activities of these governments in making and administering law in carrying on inter-state relations.

Bluntschli-Political Science is the science that is concerned with the State, which endeavors to understand and comprehend the state in its fundamental conditions. In its essential nature, its various forms of manifestations and development. (Political Science-Terms-Definitions-Nature and Scope)

Seeley-Political Science investigates the phenomena of Government in the same manner as Political Economy deals with wealth, biology with life. Algebra with numbers and Geometry with space and magnitude.

Paul Janet-Political Science is that part of social science that treats the foundations of the state and principles of government.

Laski-The study of Politics concerns itself with the life of a man about organized states.

Lasswell and Kaplan-Political Science is the study of shaping and sharing of power. Lasswell regards Political Science as a policy science. ‘the study of politics is the study of influence and the influential. The science of politics states conditions, the philosophy of politics justifies preferences.

David Easton-Political Science is concerned with the authoritative allocation of values in a society.

Bryce-Politics is the conduct of public affairs for private advantage.

Harold Lasswell-Politics is the science of who gets what, when, and why.

Nature and Development

Political Science is the field. concerning the theory and practice of politics and the description and analysis of political systems and political behavior, Political Science is a study about the state and the government. It inquires into the origin of the state and political authority. sense it also makes a historical investigation about the origin of the state. Political Science also studies the structure and functioning of the state government interstate organizations etc. In this sense, it is an analytical study of what the state is. It also attempts to formulate principles of good government or in other words, it suggests what the state ought to be.

Political philosophy may properly recognize by its critical function. According to Raphael, the fundamental purpose of traditional philosophy has been the critical evaluation of beliefs. “Philosophy differs from science in that science seeks explanation while philosophy seeks justification.”

The study of this in the Western tradition is first visible in ancient Greece. The discipline had aspects such as moral philosophy, political philosophy, political economy. history and other fields concerned with determinations of what to be and with deducing the characteristics and functions of ideal state:


The extent and nature of political science can be studied from different angles and different perspectives.


Observation reflects on sense experience alone and rules out supernatural or metaphysical causation.

Generalization(Political Science)

Generalization is particularly based on observation of regularities leading to establishing the relation and correlation between different factors or variables. This may either obtain by the inductive method (proceeding from particular to general. Arriving at a general rule after observing similarities in particular cases) or by the deductive method (proceeding from general to particular. Postulating a general rule and then confirming it by observation of particular cases.)


 This Explanation consists of giving reasons for the general rule, for without such reasoning any observation of co-relation might be a mere coincidence. The explanation alone will make particular events, situations, or tendencies effective.

Prediction and Prescriptions

It means the known facts can be judged and general rules can be effect and higher efficiency. stability, satisfaction could suggest.

Clarification of Concepts

The clarification of concepts in politics involves three related purposes. These are analysis, synthesis, and improvements of concepts, etc.

In ancient India, the antecedent of politics can be traced back to the Rig Veda, Samhitas, Brahmans, and Buddhist Pali canon.

Plato analyzed this system. abstracted their analysis from more literary and philosophical studies and applied an approach for the study of politics. Aristotle built upon Plato’s analysis to include historical and empirical evidence in his analysis.

The study of politics during this age was oriented towards understanding history, understanding methods of governing, and describing the operation of governments.

With the fall of the Roman Empire, there arose a more diffuse arena for political studies.

The rise of monotheism and particularly for the Western tradition, Christianity brought to light a new space for politics and political action.

During the Middle Ages, the study of politics was widespread in the churches and courts.

Works such as Augustine’s The City of God synthesized prevailing philosophies and political traditions with the principles of Christianity, redefining. The borders between what was religious and what was political.

 Most of the political questions surrounding the relationship between church and state were clarified and contested in this period.

During the Italian Renaissance. Niccolo Machiavelli established the foundation of modern politics on direct empirical observation of political institutions and actors.

The expansion of the scientific paradigm during the Enlightenment pushed the study of politics beyond normative determinations.

Normative and Positive (Political Science).

The advent of politics as a university discipline is evident in the 1860s by the naming of university departments and chairs with the title of Political Science.

Integrating these studies of the past into a unified discipline is ongoing and the history of Political Science has provided. The rich field for the growth of both normative and positive politics with discipline sharing some historical predecessors.

American Political Science Association was founded in 1909 as an effort to distinguish the study of politics from economics and other social sciences.

In the 1950s and the 1960s  behavioral revolution stressed. The systematic and rigorously scientific study of individual and group behavior swept the discipline.

At the same time, this subject moved toward greater depth of analysis and more sophistication.

Increasingly, Behaviouralism has used the scientific method to create an intellectual discipline based on the postulating of hypotheses. Followed by empirical verification and the inference of political trends and generalizations. That explains individual and group political actions.

In the early 1970s, with the advent of post behaviouralism, the discipline has placed an increasing emphasis on relevance. The use of new approaches and methodologies to solve political and social problems.


The scope of political science implies jurisdiction or subject matter. Political Science is a very wide and comprehensive subject. A conference of political scientists was held under the auspices of the International Political Science Association. In Paris, in the year 1945 demarcated the Scope of Political Science into four zones, namely Political theory, political institutions, Political dynamics, and international relations. Political Science has been refer to as a “master science” – by Aristotic Since then, this subject has had a history of noble growth. Over these years, such concepts as sovereignty, revolution, liberty, equality, democracy, etc, have been vividly dealt with in Political Science. So to speak, Political Science primarily deals with the state and government.

The study of the state and its government and civil society has always impacted human lives. At some point in time, Political Science considers a subsidiary part of sociology. From such a yoke, Political Science has successfully evolved as an independent discipline. In the last century, there were certain trends in Political Science-beginning from behaviouralism to post-behaviouralism to the present state of Political Science.


In the field of Politics, values were considered by the traditionalist. The traditionalists used such approaches as legal, institutional, historical to study political science which was all formalistic. Their emphasis on values was refuted by the behaviouralist led by David Easton, Catlin, Bentley, etc. In Easton’s three famous books “The Political System (1953)”. “A Framework of Political Analysis” (1965 a), and “Systems analysis of a Political Life” (1965). A debate was initiate which emphasize the “facts” in place of value to be studied in Political science. Thus debate has started as a value-fact dichotomy with an attempt to convert this into natural science.


The behaviouralist movement was followed by post behaviouralism which emphasized that instead of indulging in value-fact dichotomy. Attempts should be made to make a balance study of fact and value in Political Science. It was also pointed out that values form an integral part of the very subject and hence they can be discarded total. In the Post behavioral era, we have many approaches in this subject. Which include the systems approach, the political economy approach. Political Scientists like David Easton, Charles Lindblom, and Thomas Dye hold the view that is a policy politics. This concept of public policy is of recent origin and a product of post behaviouralism.

The scope of Political Science is below:

  1. The study of state and government.
  2. Study of political dynamics
  3. This study of political institutions
  4. In this study of political theory
  5. Study of relations of the individuals with the state.
  6. A study of International relations and international law
  7. A study of Public Policy.

Politics as Dynamics institutions and international relations.

Politics primarily studies the problem of the State and government. The states are defined as a group of people organized for law within a definite territory. Because the state has four elements, such as Population, Territory, Government, and Sovereignty.

Political theory is a major branch of politics. Based on Political ideas or the Political thinkers. The political theory formulates definitions or concepts like democracy, liberty, equality, grounds of Political obligation. This theory explains the basic concepts of Political Science.

The study of Political institutions includes the study of constitutional machinery. This covers a study of constitutions and comparative government. It deals with the nature of different political institutions including government, explains their merits and demerits, their structure and working, and arrives at different conclusions on a comparative basis.

It covers a wide range of subjects and includes diplomacy, international law, international organizations, like the U.N., etc. Because of scientific inventions and discoveries, the cooperation and contact among different nations of the world have become easier and the whole world turns to be a family.

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