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Updated in a new 9th edition, Politics in America provides straightforward, descriptive coverage of American politics and government. Using the Harold Lasswell definition of politics Tom Dye employs this classic, and still resonant, interpretation as the lens through which he examines the foundations, institutions, behaviors, and policies of the American political system.
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Table of Contents
1. Politics: Who Gets What, When, and How
2. Political Culture: Ideas in Conflict
3. The Constitution: Limiting Governmental Law
4. Federalism: Dividing Governmental Power
5. Opinion and Participation: Thinking and Acting in Politics
6. Mass Media: Setting the Political Agenda
7. Political Parties: Organizing Politics
8. Campaigns and Elections: Deciding Who Governs
9. Interest Groups: Getting Their Share and More
10. Congress: Politics on Capitol Hill
11. The President: White House Politics
12. The Bureaucracy: Bureaucratic Politics
13. Courts: Judicial Politics
14. Politics and Personal Liberty
15. Politics and Civil Rights
16. Politics and the Economy
17. Politics and Social Welfare
18. Politics and National Security
By using Lasswell's classic definition of politics as the unifying framework, Politics in America, Sixth Edition, strives to present a clear, concise, and stimulating introduction to the American political system. Politics consists of all of the activitiesreasonable discussion, impassioned oratory, campaigning, balloting, fund raising, advertising, lobbying, demonstrating, rioting, street fighting, and waging warby which conflict is carried on. Managing conflict is the principal function of the political system and power is the ultimate goal.
By examining the struggle for powerthe participants, the stakes, the processes, and the institutional arenasPolitics in America, Sixth Edition, introduces students to the politics that is the basis for our democracy. Why Politics in America?
Instructors teaching the Introductory American Government course find engaging their students to be the most difficult task facing them. Politics in America, Sixth Edition, is written to be lively and absorbing, reflecting the teaching philosophy that stimulating students' interest in politics and public affairs is the most important goal of an introductory course. Interesting examples and controversial debates spark students' interest and keep them connected to the material. The struggle for power in society is not a dull topic, and textbooks should not make it so.
Politicsin America, Sixth Edition, strives for a balanced presentation, but "balanced" does not mean boring. It does not mean the avoidance of controversy. Liberal and conservative arguments are set forth clearly and forcefully. Race and gender are given particular attention, not because it is currently fashionable to do so, but because American politics has long been driven by these factors. As in previous editions, the trademark of this book continues to be its desire to pull students into the debate that is our political system. Organization
Part I, "Politics," begins with Lasswell's classic definition of politics and proceeds to describe the nature and functions of government and the meaning of democracy. It poses the question. How democratic is the American political system? It describes the American political culture: its contradictions between liberty and conformity, political equality and economic inequality, equality of opportunity and inequality of results, the role of ideologyliberalism and conservatism, thus laying the groundwork for understanding the struggle over who gets what.
Part II, "Constitution," describes the politics of constitution makingdeciding how to decide. It describes how the struggle over the U.S. Constitution reflected the distribution of power in the new nation. It focuses on the classic arguments of the Founders for limiting and dividing governmental power and the structural arrangements designed to accomplish this end.
Part III, "Participants," begins by examining individual participation in politicsthe way people acquire and hold political opinions and act on them through voting and protest activity. It examines the influences of family, school, gender, race, and the role of media in shaping political opinion. It describes how organization concentrates powerto win public office in the case of party organizations, and to influence policy in the case of interest groups. It assesses the role of personal ambition in politics and the role of money.
Part IV, "Institutions," describes the various governmental arenas in which the struggle for power takes placethe Congress, the presidency, the bureaucracy, the courts. More important, it evaluates the power that comes with control of each of these institutions.
Part V, "Outcomes," deals with public policies-the result of the struggle over the allocation of values. It is especially concerned with the two fundamental values New Features of American societyliberty and equality. Each is examined to separate chapters, as are economic policies, welfare policies, and national security policies. New to the Sixth Edition
Americans went to the polls in 2004 in numbers never seen before and percentages not seen in forty years. Perhaps it was a lesson learned in 2000 that a few hundred votes can change the Electoral College vote and determine the presidency. Perhaps it was the projected closeness of the race between Bush and Kerry, or concern over the continuing war in Iraq, or an increased turnout of religious people concerned with growing secularism in society. Perhaps all of these conditions combined to inspire Americans to renew their commitment to the political system.
The Sixth Edition of Politics in America describes the recent changes in the political landscape of the nation. It updates students on the war on terrorism and the restrictions on freedom that it has inspired. It describes and analyzes the presidential and congressional election of 2004: the campaign strategies of George W. Bush and John F. Kerry; the impact of the war in Iraq; campaign finance "reform" and how it was evaded during the campaign; popular images of Bush and Kerry and the issues considered most important by the voters; the Republican victory in the congressional elections and the growing polarization on Capitol Hill.
The Sixth Edition also assesses bias in the media and how it has been modified by newer cable network broadcasting and the Internet; it describes new leader ship in Congress, including Senate Republican Leader Bill Frist, Sen. Hillary Clinton, and House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi; it describes charges of partisan ship in the Supreme Court (especially in Bush vs. Gore) and controversial court decisions on cross burning, gay marriage, and the rights of enemy combatants captured on the battlefield.
As in previous editions, the Sixth Edition invites controversy and spirited discussion in the classroom. It raises "politically incorrect" issuesaffirmative action and "diversity" in education; rising income inequality in America; how much campaign contributions affect congressional voting; amending the Constitution to ban gay marriages; when is the right to disobey the law; what is the appropriate justification for the use of military force; is the American government really "Of, by, and for the people." New Features
- What Do You Think? "What Government Programs Do You Support?"
- What Do You Think? "Beliefs about Fairness"
- People in Politics: Bill O'Reilly, "The No Spin Zone?"
- Up Close: Why the Founders Created an Electoral College
- People in Politics: Arnold, from Bodybuilder to Superstar to Governor.
- What Do You Think? "Do Gender Stereotypes Affect Voting?"
- Up Close: "The Generation Gap in News"
- A Conflicting View: "Fox News, 'Fair and Balanced'?"
- Up Close: "The Brief History of Money in Politics"
- Up Close: "New Ways to Evade Campaign Reform Laws"
- A Conflicting View: "Payback, Money and Medicare"
- Up Close: "Polarization on Capitol Hill"
- People in Politics: "Bill First M.D., Leading the Senate"
- Up Close: "Tips on Lobbying Congress"
- Up Close: "Contrasting Presidential Styles"
- What Do You Think? "How Would You Rate Federal Agencies?"
- People in Politics: "George Bush and 'Operator Iraqi Freedom'"
- Up Close: "How to Use the Freedom of Information Act"
- Up Close: "Women and the Courts"
- What Do You Tbink? "Do You Have Confidence in the Supreme Court?"
- A Conflicting View: "Terrorism Requires Restrictions on Civil Liberties"
- Up Close: "Why We Can Burn the Flag but Not a Cross"
The Sixth Edition provides a variety of new instructional aids, including running marginal Web site addresses on the topics under discussion. Instructional Features
Interactive Chapter Opening Survey. Each chapter opens with a brief poll called "Think about Politics" that alerts students to the crucial issues the chapter covers and the impact of those issues on their lives. This tool can be used to get students thinking about how and why politics is important to them as individuals and as members of a community.
Text and Features. The body of each chapter is divided into text and features. The text provides the framework of understanding American politics. Each chapter begins with a brief discussion of power in relation to the subject matter of the chapter: for example, limiting governmental power (Chapter 3, "The Constitution"), dividing governmental power (Chapter 4, "Federalism"), and the power of the media (Chapter 6, "Mass Media"). By focusing the beginning of each chapter on questions of power, students can more easily set the chapter content in the context of Lasswell's definition of politics.
The features in each chapter provide timeliness, relevance, stimulation, and perspective. Each boxed feature in the Sixth Edition of Politics in America is designed to encourage students to voice their opinions and explore those of others. If the key to learning is active involvement, students should be encouraged to read and respond whenever possible.
- "What Do You Think?": These features pose controversial questions to students and provide national opinion survey data. They cover a wide range of interests designed to stimulate classroom discussion. Examples include: "Can You Trust the Government?" "Is American Government 'Of, By and For the People'?" "Are You a Liberal or a Conservative?" "Does Money Buy Influence in Washington?" "How Would You Rate the Presidents?" "Should We Judge Presidents on Private Character or Performance in Office?" "How Much Money Does the Government Waste?" "What Constitutes Sexual Harassment?"
- "A Conflicting View": These features challenge students to rethink conventional notions about American politics. They are designed to be controversial and to start students thinking about the push and pull that is politics. "Conflicting View" features include: "An Economic Interpretation of the Constitution," "Objections to the Constitution by an Anti-Federalist," "The War on Drugs Threatens Individual Liberty," "The Constitution Should Be Color-Blind."
- "Compared to What?": These features provide students with global context by comparing the United States with other nations. Discussions include "Freedom and Democracy around the World," as well as such topics as the size of government, tax burdens, voter turnout, political parties, television culture, health care, and the earnings gap between men and, women.
- "People in Politics": These features are designed to personalize politics for students, to illustrate to them that the participants in the struggle for power are real people. They discuss where prominent people in politics went to school, how they got started in politics, how their careers developed, and how much power they came to possess. Both historicalJohn Locke and James Madisonand current figures, such as Arnold Schwarzeneggar, Ralph Nader, Colin Powell, and Ted Kennedy are discussed.
- "Up Close": These features illustrate the struggle over who gets what. They range over a wide variety of current political conflicts, such as "Sex, Lies, and Impeachment," "Abortion, the Hot Button' Issue," "Dirty Politics," "AARP: The Nation's Most Powerful Interest Group," "The Christian Coalition: Organizing the Faithful," "Is Welfare Reform Working?" A special feature, "How to Run for Office," provides practical advice on how to get into electoral politics.
- "Across the USA": These features provide maps that summarize important statistical and demographic information relevant to American politics.
Learning Aids. Each chapter contains a running glossary in the margin to help students master important concepts, Web sites where students can obtain additional information direct from political sources, a chapter outline, a summary, and a list of annotated suggested readings, as well as marginal questions that relate to the chapter opening survey. Technology Initiatives
With the development of new technologies, we have discovered more and more ways of helping students and instructors to further understand and analyze information. In this edition, we have made every effort to give both instructors and students a large array of multimedia tools to help with both the presentation and the learning of the material.
- New! Make It Real is a comprehensive Web site that contains dynamic simulations developed by Prentice Hall exclusively for American Government. In addition to simulations, Make It Real also contains activities on civic participation, interactive timelines and maps, quizzes, primary source documents, Census 2000 data, and exercises in visual literacy. Students will use information such as real election results, real demographics, maps and voting score cards. Self-study quizzes are available for the student to take to make sure they understand the concepts used in completing the simulations and other activities.
- New and Improved Evaluating Online Resources for Political Science with Research Navigator; Our newest addition to the reliable Internet guide for political science, Prentice Hall's new Research Navigator TM keeps instructors and students abreast of the latest news and information and helps students create top quality research papers. From finding the right articles and journals, to citing sources, drafting and writing effective papers, and completing research assignments, Research Navigator simplifies and streamlines the entire process. It offers extensive help on the research process and three exclusive databases full of relevant and reliable source material including EBSCO's Content-Select Academic Journal Database, The New York Times Search-by-Subject Archive, and "Best of the Web" Link Library. A unique access code for Research Navigator is provided on the inside front cover of the booklet. The booklet contains an introduction to the Internet. Evaluating Online Resources for Political Science with Research Navigator is FREE when packaged with Politics in America and available for stand-alone sale. Take a tour on the web at researchnavigator.com
- Improved Companion Website (prenhall.com/dye): Students can now take full advantage of the World Wide Web to enrich the study of American government through the Politics in America Website. Interactive Web exercises guide students to do research with a series of questions and links.
- Evaluating Online Resources for Political Science with Research Navigator: This timely supplement provides an introduction to the Internet and the numerous political sites on the World Wide Web. It describes e-mail, list servers, browsers, and how to document sources. It also includes Web addresses for the most current and useful political Web sites.
OneKey. Instructors and students will find all of their resourcesall in one placeall organized around the chapters of this text for maximum convenience and flexibility in OneKey, Prentice Hall's new and exclusive one-stop shop. Among the resources available for each chapter include all of the Make It Real simulations, chapter assessment with e-book PDF in feedback, flash-cards, crossword puzzles, chapter opening questions, chapter outline/summary. For the instructor, OneKey also contains: Instructors Manual and Test Item File, powerpoints, image bank, audio of great speeches and video clips from campaigns and advertisements.