American Government: Political Development and Institutional Change / Edition 6

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(This book) provides (an) introduction to American government that emphasizes the historical foundations of U.S. political institutions and the way they have developed in response to change. (The book) challenges students to think critically about how the American political system operates. (This) textbook provides up-to-date coverage of the 1998 mid-term elections. -Back cover.

[This book] provides [an] introduction to American government that emphasizes the historical foundations of U.S. political institutions and the way they have developed in response to change. [The book] challenges students to think critically about how the American political system operates. [This] textbook provides up-to-date coverage of the 1998 mid-term elections. -Back cover.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"If one is looking for a relatively compact, yet historically grounded introductory American government text, one which delivers its information creatively and clearly, I am unaware of any work superior to Jillson’s."

—Russell Arben Fox, Friends University

"I’m looking forward to teaching with the new edition of American Government: Political Development and Institutional Change in the coming semesters. Jillson’s historically grounded explanations of the American political system are both nuanced and accessible, and the "Pro & Con" and "Let’s Compare" features offer natural springboards for class discussion. This book truly stands apart from the vast crowd of introductory American politics textbooks."

—Shamira M. Gelbman, Illinois State University

"In crafting a text on American government, the greatest difficulty lies in explaining the complexity of the American political system and at the same time making that explanation accessible. One must also balance the substance of American politics with a clear description of its processes. Cal Jillson accomplishes all of these things with extraordinary ease."

—Christopher Malone, Pace University

"Cal Jillson's text is a highly recommended source for any classroom that is concerned about content, consistency and accurate information. The ideals that Jillson so thoroughly includes in this text are straight down the middle and do not in any way cater to the right or left, which is a refreshing idea in today’s educational world. An A+ for government classes everywhere!"

—Drew Mowen, Ft Scott Community College

"Jillson's carefully crafted book helps students understand American politics at a deeper and more engaging level than other texts. Each clear, concise chapter weaves together the threads of American political growth into a thoughtful perspective on the nation’s urgent challenges."

—Dave Robertson, University of Missouri - St. Louis

"The textbook's thesis is that the American political system is best understood when viewed through the lens of institutions, and how and why those institutions have evolved over time. In my mind, this is the most important way to understand American politics. Students will gain a much more substantive understanding of American politics from this book than they would from nearly any other textbook on the market today."

—Quentin Kidd, Christopher Newport University

"Like other scholars, I have searched and searched for the best American Government text. I adopted Jillson's American Government: Political Development and Institutional Change because of its in-depth coverage of political history, Supreme Court cases, and basic facts. I particularly like the first three chapters of the seventh edition, on political principles, the Constitution, and federalism, which Jillson takes as seriously as the more core chapters on Congress, the presidency, and the courts. I assign his text to honors students, but any undergraduate would find it easily accessible. It is a great book."

—Keith Dougherty, University of Georgia

"Cal Jillson deploys an historical development narrative while still organizing according to the major institutions and processes that are broadly accepted in political science. The result is a book that connects the political challenges of today to the political conflicts of the past. Students can see not only ways in which the political system has changed, but also how choices we make today will shape the setting for addressing problems to be faced in the future."

—Jonathan Chausovsky, SUNY Fredonia

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780415881579
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 2/2/2011
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Edition number: 6
  • Pages: 656
  • Product dimensions: 7.50 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Cal Jillson is Professor in the Department of Political Science at Southern Methodist University. His recent books include Texas Politics: Governing the Lone Star State, Pursuing the American Dream: Opportunity and Exclusion Over Four Centuries, Pathways to Democracy: The Political Economy of Democratic Transitions, and The Dynamics of American Politics.

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Table of Contents

1. The Origins of American Political Principles 2. The Revolution and the Constitution 3. Federalism and American Political Development 4. Political Socialization and Public Opinion 5. The Mass Media and the Political Agenda 6. Interest Groups: The Politics of Influence 7. Political Parties: Winning the Right to Govern 8. Voting, Campaigns, and Elections 9. Congress: Local Representation and National Lawmaking 10. The President: Governing in Uncertain Times 11. Bureaucracy: Redesigning Government for the Twenty-First Century 12. The Federal Courts: Activism versus Restraint 13. Civil Liberties: Ordered Liberty in America 14. Civil Rights: Where Liberty and Equality Collide 15. Government, the Economy, and Domestic Policy 16. America’s Place in a Dangerous World. Appendix A: Declaration of Independence. Appendix B: The Articles of Confederation. Appendix C: Constitution of the United States. Appendix D: Federalist Numbers 10, 51, and 78. Appendix E: Partisan Control of the Presidency, Congress, and the Supreme Court

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