Meaning and definition of Political Science

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Question: What do you understand from political science? 

Or" Define political science.

Or" what is political science? Explain the meaning of politics.

Or" discuss the meaning and definition of political science.

Or" explain the meaning of political science.

Or" what is meaning of political science.


Meaning of Political Science

Political science is a branch of Social Science that includes the study of the political alliance of human beings. Under this, the political relations and organizations of social life are studied. Under this, the study of social life's political relations and organizations is done.

'Politics' is derived from the Greek language with the meaning "City-state." During the Aristotle regime, there were many city-states in Greece, like Athens, Sparta, etc. These cities were independent of their administration. The word 'Politics' is used to understand the governance system of these cities. As time passed, more extensive political, religious, social, and scientific changes and developments occurred in human life. As a result, the city-states were now replaced by the national states. In increasing the size of the state, first religion, then science played a big role.

Along with area development, political development also took place. As the size of the states increased along with it, the field of politics also became wider. In modern times, all parts of life have been studied scientifically. Therefore, state matters were studied systematically in a scientific way. This study of the state is called political science.

A famous fact of the antiquity of political science, which has made remarkable progress in ancient times from Plato and Aristotle to the present era. The Greeks are credited with being its father because the Greeks were the first to look at political questions with critical and rational thinking.

The modern age is the age of politics in the same way as the age of spirituality and religion in ancient times in civilized society. Politics so much influences us that it affects every aspect of our life sphere. It would not be an exaggeration to say that our lives are impossible without participating in politics.

Definition of Political Science

While defining Political Science, scholars have seen different aspects of it. The definition of political science is from the following two points of view---

(A) Traditional approach

(B) Modern approach

(A) Traditional Approach

Political Science is a dynamic science that has been defined from time to time. The order of defining the subject matter of political science was traditionally prevalent from Greece to the 19th century. The Traditional Approach is also called the Institutional Approach. Political science has been defined by scholars related to this approach as the subject of study of the state, government, or both state and government. No state is possible without the government because the land that comes within a Coercive Association has no meaning unless there are some persons on the state's behalf to determine the rules and ensure their compliance. The collected form of these individuals is called government. In this way, the traditional definitions of political science are generally placed in three categories--

1. Political science is the study of the state.

2. Political science is the study of government.

3. Political science is the study of both government and state.

1. Political Science is the study of the state:

Some scholars consider political science to be the study of the state. In their view, the study of the state also includes government studies. Following are the definitions of some of the prominent scholars of this category--

According to Garner, "State is the beginning and end of the study of Political Science."

According to Blunsley, "Political science is that science concerned with the state and which tries to understand the basic elements of the state, its elemental forms, and its various forms and how it developed."

Garris states, "Political science transgresses the state's origin, development, purpose, and political problems."

According to Zacharias, "Political science systematically presents the basic principles according to which the state as a population is organized, and sovereignty is exercised."

The above definitions are based on the Greek view of the state under which the state was considered the best community as a synonym for society. These scholars have included the study of government or man in the study of the state itself.

2. Political science is the study of government

Talking about the second class, Scholars have defined political science as the subject of a government's study. There is a general assumption behind this, i.e., the state is an abstract concept required for the government to give any meaning. The work done by the government gives the impression of being a state. Therefore, keeping this idea in the center, the term Political Science has been defined. Some of the main definitions of this category are as follows--

According to Leacock, "Political science is concerned with government, governance which in the broad sense is based on the basic idea of power."

Seeley states, "Government is practiced under political science in the same way as money in economics, life in zoology, numbers in algebra, and space and distance in geometry."

According to William Robson, "The main aim of political science is to throw light on political thought and political action so that the government can be promoted."

The above-given definitions give importance to its practical side, i.e., government, compared to the state's theoretical side as a unit. These definitions are based on the concept that the operation of the state as an organized society is based in practice on the aggregate of those by whom laws are made and implemented.

3. Political Science is the study of both State and Government

The third category of the traditional approach includes definitions that consider both the state and the government as the subject of political science. In the absence of the state, we can not imagine any government, and in the absence of government, the state is a theoretical and abstract concept. Following are some of the main definitions of this category--

According to Willoughby, "Political science, in general, is concerned with three major disciplines-- state, government, and law."

According to Paul Janet, "Political science is that part of social science that considers the state's foundations and the principles of government."

According to Gilchrist, "Political science studies the widespread issues of the state and government."

According to Dimock, "Political science is concerned with the state and its instruments of government."

The third category of the traditional approach to the definition of political science can be considered more comprehensive and clear than the first category (which considers political science to be the study of the state) and the second category(Which considers political science to be the study of government) because The definitions of the third category include both the tangible and the intangible aspects of the state.

The traditional view of the definition of political science is considered incomplete. It considers more or less the study of formal institutions or structures at the center of political science. Pupils of this category don't require to pay attention to the extent to which the state and its institutions fulfill the needs and welfare of the individual. In other words, this approach studies the state and other institutions with limited meaning.

(B) Definitions of Political Science based on Modern Approach

Due to the vast changes in the world after the Second World War, there has been a vast change in the nature of the subject matter and definitions of Political Science. This change is commonly known as Intellectual Revolution or Behavioral Revolution. This revolution has criticized the traditional approach as 'parochial' and 'formal.' Behaviorists have argued that the traditional approach has focused primarily on formal institutions and their legal norms, rules, and ideas, not on the behavior, performance, and interaction of those institutions. Caplan, George, Caitlin, FM. Thinkers like Watkins, Bertrand Russell, Bertrand Javanl, Jean Blundell, Divitt Apter, etc., come in this category.

These thinkers have considered political science as the study of power. It includes all those activities that are either related to the 'struggle for power' or affect this struggle. Modernism or behaviorists have defined political science as follows--

According to Bertrand D. Jovenal, "Politics refers to the struggle that precedes the decision and the implemented policy."

David Easton's views, "Politics is concerned with the authorized allocation of values."

Let's see what Laswell and Caplan say on Politics, "Political science as a practical discovery is the study of the determination and distribution of power."

According to Huszar and Stevenson, "Political science is that field of study in which study of power connections come."

The modern or pragmatist approach considers political science to be an attempt to provide a broader dimension to it rather than considering it as a study of formal institutions like the state or government. Behaviorism considers every activity related to attaining power or power in society as a subject matter of political science.

What should be the appropriate definition of Political Science

Based on the study of all the above definitions, only one suitable definition of political science can be given, i.e., political science is that part of social science under which the study of state and governance has come. Along with this, man's political, economic, and social activities and their processes are also studied in Political Science.

In short, Political Science is the study of the entire political system.

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