Description of Polictical Science Not Yet Complete Essay
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Over the year’s political science has been defined in several ways; the study of power, the study of the monopoly of the legitimate use of force, the study of the good life, and more (p1). However, Western political science distinguishes itself in a way because it has not yet arrived at a consensus on how its subject matter should be described (p1).
Western and especially American political Science has passed through four different stages during the twentieth century, and one hopes that each stage has been improved upon by each succeeding stage. The various stages that will be discussed are the formal, the traditional, the behavioral, and the post-behavioral” (p1).
THE FORMAL AND TRADITIONAL STAGES
In the late eighteen hundreds, Walter…show more content… Behavioralism had six major characteristics that distinguished it from earlier stages in political science. Its first characteristic is that there are discoverable uniformities in the behavior of human beings. The second is that, through empirical testing, these uniformities can be confirmed. Third, there was a desire for more thorough and accurate methods for acquiring data and for analyzing it. Fourth, the behavioral movement had a greater theoretical sophistication than it had in the past. In the past theories had been philosophical in character; whereas the Behavioral theory seeks to explain, understand, and if possible predict the political behavior of people as well as the way political institutions operate through empirical methods. Fifth, a great deal of behavioralists felt it was unnecessary to include the values of either the research worker or of society in the process of inquiry. It was viewed that ethical evaluation and empirical explanation should be kept separate and distinct. Sixth, represented by behavioralism was an assumption that a social scientists task was to obtain fundamental understanding and explanation. It was thought that a reliable understanding of the operation of political institutions and people's political behavior could be used to solve social problems. The behavioralist period switched the attention of scholars away from social reform and showed them the needs of scientific development to guide research. (p3-5) There were two things