Political Man

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Political Man
Author Seymour Martin Lipset
Country United States
Language English
Subject Political science
Publisher Doubleday & Company
Publication date
1960
Media type Hardback/paperback
Pages 477
ISBN 0-8018-2522-9
OCLC 7275560
306/.2 19
LC Class JC423 .L58 1981

Political Man: The Social Bases of Politics is an award winning political science book by Seymour Martin Lipset.[1]

The book is an influential analysis of the bases of democracy across the world. One of the important sections is Chapter 2: "Economic Development and Democracy." Larry Diamond and Gary Marks argue that "Lipset's assertion of a direct relationship between economic development and democracy has been subjected to extensive empirical examination, both quantitative and qualitative, in the past 30 years. And the evidence shows, with striking clarity and consistency, a strong causal relationship between economic development and democracy."[2]

The book sold more than 400,000 copies and was translated into 20 languages, including: Vietnamese, Bengali, and Serbo-Croatian.[3]

Contents[edit]

  • Contents
    • Chapter I: The Sociology of Politics
  • PART I: The Conditions of the Democratic Order
    • Chapter II: Economic Development and Democracy
    • Chapter III: Social Conflict, Legitimacy, and Democracy
    • Chapter IV: Working-class Authoritarianism
    • Chapter V: Fascism—Left, Right, and Center
  • PART II: Voting in Western Democracies
    • Chapter VI: Elections: Who Votes and Who Doesn't?
    • Chapter VII: Elections: The Expression of the Democratic Class Struggle
    • Chapter VIII: Elections: The Expression of the Democratic Class Struggle—Continuity and Change
  • PART III: Political Behavior in American Society
    • Chapter IX: Classes and Parties in American Politics
    • Chapter X: American Intellectuals: Their Politics and Status
    • Chapter XI: The Emergence of the One-party South—The Election of 1860
  • PART IV: The Politics of Private Government: A Case Study
    • Chapter XII: The Political Process in Trade-unions
  • A Personal Postscript
    • Chapter XII: The Political Process in Trade-unions

Chapter synopsis[edit]

  • Chapter I: The Sociology of Politics: Successful/stable democracies need conflict or cleavages to succeed. Why? Allows for PEACEFUL play of power. E.g. Trade-unions help integrate members in the body politic and give them a basis for loyalty to the political system.
  • Chapter II: Economic Development and Democracy: Democracy: a political system which supplies regular constitutional opportunities for changing government officials, and a social mechanism which permits the largest possible part of the population to influence major decisions by choosing among contenders for office.
Definition implies a political formula or body of beliefs specifying which institutions are legitimate (accepted as proper by the citizenry): e.g. parties, press, etc. Winners and losers vie for political office. Why needed? Conditions needed because if a political system is not characterized by a value system allowing the peaceful play of power, democracy can become chaotic.
  • Chapter III: Social Conflict, Legitimacy, and Democracy
  • Chapter IV: Working-class Authoritarianism
  • Chapter V: Fascism—Left, Right, and Center
  • Chapter VI: Elections: Who Votes and Who Doesn't?
  • Chapter VII: Elections: The Expression of the Democratic Class Struggle
  • Chapter VIII: Elections: The Expression of the Democratic Class Struggle—Continuity and Change
  • Chapter IX: Classes and Parties in American Politics
  • Chapter X: American Intellectuals: Their Politics and Status
  • Chapter XI: The Emergence of the One-party South—The Election of 1860
  • Chapter XII: The Political Process in Trade-unions

References[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Lipset, Seymour Martin. Garden City, New York: Anchor Books, 1960.
  2. ^ Diamond, Larry and Gary Marks. Extension, a Journal of the Carl Albert Center, "Seymour Martin Lipset and the Study of Democracy," 1992. Last accessed: December 27, 2007.
  3. ^ Diamond, Larry. Hoover Institution, "In Memoriam: Seymour Martin Lipset, 1922–2006: A Giant among Teachers," 2007. Last accessed: December 27, 2007.

External links[edit]