Discuss the meaning and nature of political theory.

Discuss the meaning and nature of political theory.

What is Politics and Political Science?

Common people, renowned scholars and political scientists of high repute fairly often use the words politics and politics to denote an equivalent thing that's they use the 2 terms interchangeably. But a correct scrutiny and hair split analysis will reveal that there's a difference between the terms though this difference can easily be ignored. it's believed that the term politics springs from the word Polis the precise meaning of which is city-state.
In ancient Greece, polis or the town state was the foremost popular and general sort of political organisation. Every polis or city- state had its own sort of government, administration, management etc and every one these didn't depend on the dimensions of the polis or city-state. Thus politics means the politics or administration of polis. Thus politics is known to denote something about polis or city-state.

In today’s world there's practically no existence of city-state but the term politics derived from polis has gained popularity, publicity and importance. Now-a-days by politics we generally mean the activities related to the governance of a rustic or area. We thus cannot separate the term politics from the affairs of state and these affairs are related to the administration and deciding problems with state. Politics during this way has been inextricably connected with state because it was in ancient Greece with the polis.

We have thus far noted just one meaning of the term politics but there's another meaning which is additionally to be found in wide circulation. This meaning is—activities aimed toward improving some one’s status within an organisation. during this sense politics is employed to mean as a kind of instrument or vehicle to realize definite purpose.

The purpose could also be of a specific person or group of persons and it's going to be good or bad. However it's going to be, politics acts as an instrument and it carries with it pejorative sense or connotation. We are thus during a position to conclude that politics has two distinct meanings—one is academic which is related to the administration or management of state and therefore the other is non-academic which is usually pejorative.

It is the latter meaning which has introduced a difference between politics and politics . A general and numerously accepted definition of politics is: The study of state, government and politics and this study must be supported scientific principles and reasons. politics is, therefore, a tutorial discipline.

Some academicians are inclined to treat it within the following way:

 Political science isn't only the study of state and state but also it's the appliance of empirical theory and scientific methods to the analysis of political matters. After the Second war (193-9-1945) a really good number of political scientists of us applied number of scientific methods for the investigation and analysis of political matters incidents and issues and then they framed models and ideas and every one these have finally constituted body of politics .
Hence it can naively be observed that while in non-academic sense the politics is employed pejoratively, politics is blessed academic and wider meaning. an outsized section of common men is familiar with using the non-academic connotation of the term politics. We fairly often say that behind of these activities there's politics.

  • The meaning of which is that persons concerned use their official position or other means to realize particular objectives to which they're not legally and normally entitled. Politics during this sense is an unfair means. Therefore, the non-academic meaning of politics has nothing to try to to with fairness. In both national and international politics this meaning of politics has gained precedence.

  • In international politics we are well familiar with the term gunboat diplomacy . Many big powers use politics as a weapon to determine their authority in – Systeme International d'Unites and to reinforce their image and influence. But politics is sort of satisfied with academic meanings. Some conclude that politics is only a tutorial concept and a discipline while politics when used un-academically can't be treated as a discipline. However, this narrow meaning has acknowledged a secure place within the whole gamut of the topic .

A few more words could also be still added to our analysis about politics in academic sense and non-academic sense. A recent author aments by observing that politics may be a “dirty” word and it's fairly often related to some kind of self-seeking interests and hypocrisy and within the name of politics many nefarious activities are gleefully performed and this tendency is considerably vitiating social atmosphere.

Easton’s Definition:

We have analysed variety of definitions of politics and that we shall now address David Easton’s famous definition which he has given in his noted work The form of government (1971). He says: politics is described because the study of the authoritative allocation of values for a society.

The point to notice is that this particular definition is sort of different from all other definitions. The meanings of the three concepts are to be enquired and that they are: policy, authority and society. Only the authority allocates or can allocate values and for that purpose it adopts policy: Values are allocated for society.

NATURE OF Political Orientation

To know clearly on what political orientation really is, is to understand its nature. political orientation is claimed to be political thought, which is why there are some who describe political orientation as denoting the works of various thinkers. But it's not what political thought is. There are others who equate political orientation with political philosophy. it's true that political orientation constitutes a neighborhood of political philosophy, but it's only a neighborhood ; a part can never be an entire , and as a neighborhood , it remains only a neighborhood , a neighborhood of the entire . There are still others who after incorporating science in politics, like better to call it politics

Political Theory as History

That political orientation is history has been emphatically advocated by scholars like George Sabine, but all history isn't political orientation even as all political orientation isn't history. political orientation without history may be a structure without a base. In studying and analysing politics, what we learn to know may be a political tradition, and a concrete way of behaviour. It is, therefore, proper that the study of politics should essentially be a historical study. History, we should always know, is quite the story of the dead and therefore the buried; it's a storehouse of experience and wisdom; successes and failures, of what has been achieved, and what has been lost. it's the sum-total and simultaneously the formation-head of a replacement development, something, as Professor L.S. Rathore says, “eternally significant and instructive, inseparably linked with contemporaneity within the perpetual progress of mankind.” “Ignore history”, he warns, “and the delight of political orientation isn't to be retrieved.”
the meaning and nature of political theory, political theory, political theory as a history, nature of political theory

Political theory as history defies what has lost its value. nobody cries now that the state has been a divine creation or the results of a accept the state of nature. As history, political orientation conserves what has significance and helps posterity to cherish it for an extended time to return . Concepts like justice, liberty, equality, obligation, as evolved through the annals of your time , are being held high by political orientation today and shall still be so in future. Indeed, history never repeats, but it can hardly be ignored. within the plan to divorce itself from history, political theory loses its own significance, for there are often no fruits without roots as Seeley had said
long ago. it's through history that political orientation explains what's what. One can never understand a text without its context. Plato’s communism was significantly different from what's claimed to be Marx’s communism, and one can understand communism of every by understanding the history of their respective times. it's one’s age that prompts and propels one’s political orientation : history shapes and reshapes political theory. How can, then, political orientation ignore its one aspect, the historical aspect? Sabine writes that great political orientation excels both in “an analysis of a gift situation and in suggestiveness for other situations”. As such, “a good political theory”, Professor S.P. Varma (Modern political orientation , 1987) writes, “even though
it is the result of a peculiar set of historical circumstances, features a significance for all times to return . it's exactly this universal character of political orientation which makes it respectable”. (See George H. Sabine, “What is Political Theory?” Journal of Politics, Vol. I, No. 1, February 1939).
Political theory is history within the sense that it seeks to know the time, the place and therefore the circumstances during which it evolves.

Political Theory as Philosophy
That political orientation may be a philosophy has been alright enunciated by scholars like Leo Strauss, (“What is Political Philosophy?” Journal of Politics, XIX, August 1967), but all philosophy isn't political orientation as all political orientation isn't philosophy. Philosophy, as an abstract study encompassing the entire universe generally , and morals, norms, and values especially , is that the sum-total of general laws governing the entire world. it's served political orientation well through the ages as its valuational factor, as Sabine has said. Philosophy, as Kant says, has answered three questions: “What am i able to know?” “What must I do?” and “What am i able to hope for?” and this
is what makes philosophy a lodestar of life. Without philosophy, no political orientation can ever hope to exist; without an eye fixed on future, no present can ever afford to remain as no present stands without its past.
Political theory may be a philosophy, for it not only seeks to understand the character of things but also attempts to elucidate on why things really exist. One understands an action or an idea only by evaluating it. Evaluation may be a a part of understanding. Philosophy as distinct from theory may be a ‘quest for wisdom’ or as Strauss holds the view, “quest for universal knowledge, for knowledge of the whole”. political orientation as philosophy is “the attempt truly to understand both the character of political things and therefore the right, or the great , political order” (Strauss). Politics isn't what one
assumes or opines. In fact, a political theorist is predicted to possess quite an assumption or an opinion; he has got to have knowledge. Philosophy emerges when opinion/assumption attains the heights of data , which is what exactly is that the task of political orientation . political orientation as philosophy is an “attempt to exchange opinion/assumption about the character of political things by knowledge of the character of political things” (Strauss).
Values, Strauss believes, are an important a part of political orientation as they're , of philosophy. Every political philosopher has got to be an educator in his own right: he must profess; he must teach; he must persuade. Professor Varma, therefore, writes that the thing of persuasion is usually there before the political theorist. “What a number of the fashionable writers have described as “the folk-lore of political philosophy’, or mere ‘ideology’, is significant for the understanding of political orientation .” political orientation not only explains, but also affects, favourably or adversely. Evaluational aspects of a political activity are as important as its factual aspects. It is, during this sense, that values and facts form an integral a part of any political orientation .

Political Theory as Science

That political orientation may be a science has been forcefully emphasised by scholars from Arthur Bentley (The Process of state , 1908) to George Catlin (The Science and Method of Politics, 1927); David Easton (The form of government , 1953) and Robert Dahl (Modern Political Analysis, 1963); but all science isn't political orientation , even as all political orientation isn't science. political orientation isn't science within the sense Chemistry or Physics or Mathematics may be a science. it's not as exact a science as these natural or physical sciences are, because there are not any universally recognised principles, no clear cause-effect relationships, no laboratories and no predictions are made in political orientation the way these are found in natural and exact sciences.

It is a science in thus far because it admits concepts and norms which are both observable and testable, and in thus far because it responds to the wants of reason and rationalism. The American science researchers generally , and therefore the Behaviouralists especially , sought to make a science of politics and within the process, indulged in what could also be called ‘reductionism’. political orientation may be a science in thus far because it can, and actually , is applied to a social affair and therefore the definitive rules of the precise sciences are applicable within the restrictions as in any science . political orientation as a science is merely a science . it's a science in its methodology, in its approach
and in its analysis. thereto extent, it's a science, a major science as Aristotle had described it. it's a science in thus far as its conclusions are drawn after ‘study’, ‘observation’, ‘experiments’, features which go along side any normal definition of science. there's no got to go an extended thanks to make a ‘science’ of politics, and to seek out ‘techniques’, and ‘tools’ to form politics a particular science, regardless of whether there remains, within the process, any political orientation or not. The role of science in political orientation should be limited to the extent that it helps understand a political phenomenon, and thereto extent, science should have an entry within the realms of political theory. political orientation admits objectivity in association with subjectivity, facts in reference to values, research along side theory. political orientation as science generates neutral, dispassionate and objective knowledge (See, Colin Hay, Political Analysis, 2002).
There are limits of social sciences. In contrast, the principles of the sport (that of the precise sciences) don't change with time. The laws of physics, as an example , are often assumed to pertain to all or any situations in the least times – past, present and future. But this is often not true of the social sciences. “The nature of the ‘economic’ and therefore the ‘political’ is,” Colin Hay says, “different after Keynes and Marx during a way that the ‘physical’ and therefore the ‘natural’ isn't after Newton and Einstein”. We must remember that (i) “Social structures, unlike natural structures, don't exist independently
of the activities they govern”, (ii) “social structures, unlike the natural structures, don't exist independently of the agent’s conceptions of what they're doing in their activity.” (iii) “social structures, unlike natural structures, could also be only relatively enduring.” (See R. Bhaskar, the bounds of Naturalism, 1979). this is often where the social sciences are different from the natural sciences. the bounds of political orientation are figured out within the ethics of political analysis.

For Assignment PDF
Subcribe YouTube : My IGNOU Solutions