The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to politics and political science:
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Politics – the exercise of power; process by which groups of people make collective decisions. Politics is the art or science of running governmental or state affairs (including behavior within civil governments), institutions, fields, and special interest groups such as the corporate, academic, and religious segments of society.
Political science – the field concerning the theory and practice of politics and the description and analysis of political systems and political behavior.
The separation of powers is typically set in the constitution or basic law in order to achieve checks and balances within government. The typical model has three branches, and is referred to as the trias politica.
A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, often a state, but also other entities like for example companies, especially in the case of colonial companies.
Libertarian socialism, also referred to as anarcho-socialism, anarchist socialism, free socialism, stateless socialism, socialist anarchism and socialist libertarianism, is a set of anti-authoritarian, anti-statist and libertarian political philosophies within the socialist movement which rejects the conception of socialism as a form where the state retains centralized control of the economy. Overlapping with anarchism and libertarianism, it criticizes wage labour relationships within the workplace, emphasizing workers' self-management of the workplace and decentralized structures of political organization.
Left-wing politics supports social equality and egalitarianism, often in opposition to social hierarchy. It typically involves a concern for those in society whom its adherents perceive as disadvantaged relative to others as well as a belief that there are unjustified inequalities that need to be reduced or abolished.
Leninism is a political theory developed by Russian revolutionary Vladimir Lenin that proposes the establishment of the dictatorship of the proletariat, led by a revolutionary vanguard party, as the political prelude to the establishment of socialism. The function of the Leninist vanguard party is to provide the working classes with the political consciousness and revolutionary leadership necessary to depose capitalism in the Russian Empire (1721–1917). Leninist revolutionary leadership is based upon The Communist Manifesto (1848) identifying the communist party as "the most advanced and resolute section of the working class parties of every country; that section which pushes forward all others." As the vanguard party, the Bolsheviks viewed history through the theoretical framework of dialectical materialism, which sanctioned political commitment to the successful overthrow of capitalism, and then to instituting socialism; and, as the revolutionary national government, to realize the socio-economic transition by all means.
Politics is the set of activities that are associated with making decisions in groups, or other forms of power relations between individuals, such as the distribution of resources. The academic study of politics is referred to as political science.
Political philosophy, also known as political theory, is the study of topics such as politics, liberty, justice, property, rights, law, and the enforcement of laws by authority: what they are, if they are needed, what makes a government legitimate, what rights and freedoms it should protect, what form it should take, what the law is, and what duties citizens owe to a legitimate government, if any, and when it may be legitimately overthrown, if ever.
Socialism is a political, social, and economic philosophy encompassing a range of economic and social systems characterised by social ownership of the means of production and workers' self-management of enterprises. It includes the political theories and movements associated with such systems. Social ownership can be public, collective, cooperative or of equity. While no single definition encapsulates many types of socialism, social ownership is the one common element.
Right-wing politics holds the view that certain social orders and hierarchies are inevitable, natural, normal, or desirable, typically supporting this position on the basis of natural law, economics, or tradition. Hierarchy and inequality may be viewed as natural results of traditional social differences or the competition in market economies. The term right-wing can generally refer to ’the conservative or reactionary section of a political party or system’.
A political movement is a collective attempt by a group of people to change government policy or society with mainly political goals. Political movements are usually in opposition to an element of the status quo and are often associated with a certain ideology. Some theories of political movements are the political opportunity theory which states that political movements stem from mere circumstances and the resource mobilization theory which states that political movements result from strategic organization and relevant resources. Political movements are also related to political parties in the sense that they both aim to make an impact on the government and that several political parties have emerged from initial political movements. While political parties are engaged with a multitude of issues, political movements tend to focus on only one major issue.
The nature of capitalism is criticized by anarchists, who reject hierarchy and advocate stateless societies based on non-hierarchical voluntary associations. Anarchism is generally defined as the libertarian philosophy which holds the state to be undesirable, unnecessary and harmful as well as opposing authoritarianism, illegitimate authority and hierarchical organization in the conduct of human relations. Capitalism is generally considered by scholars to be an economic system that includes private ownership of the means of production, creation of goods or services for profit or income, the accumulation of capital, competitive markets, voluntary exchange and wage labor which has generally been opposed by anarchists historically. Since capitalism is variously defined by sources and there is no general consensus among scholars on the definition nor on how the term should be used as a historical category, the designation is applied to a variety of historical cases, varying in time, geography, politics and culture.
Marxism is a method of socioeconomic analysis that uses a materialist interpretation of historical development to understand class relations and social conflict, as well as a dialectical perspective to view social transformation. It originates from the works of 19th-century German philosophers Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels. As Marxism has developed over time into various branches and schools of thought, there is currently no single definitive Marxist theory.
Anarchism is generally defined as the political philosophy which holds the state to be undesirable, unnecessary and harmful as well as opposing authority and hierarchical organization in the conduct of human relations. Proponents of anarchism, known as anarchists, advocate stateless societies based on non-hierarchical voluntary associations. While anarchism holds the state to be undesirable, unnecessary and harmful, opposition to the state is not its central or sole definition. Anarchism can entail opposing authority or hierarchy in the conduct of all human relations.
Politics is the process by which groups of people make decisions. Although the term is generally applied to behavior within civil governments, politics is observed in all human group interactions, including corporate, academic, and religious institutions. Politics consists of "social relations involving authority or power. The definition of "politics" from "The Free Dictionary" is the study of political behavior and examines the acquisition and application of power. Politics study include political philosophy, which seeks a rationale for politics and an ethic of public behavior, and public administration, which examines the practices of governance.
Articles in social and political philosophy include:
Social democracy is a political, social and economic philosophy within socialism that supports political and economic democracy. As a policy regime, it is described by academics as advocating economic and social interventions to promote social justice within the framework of a liberal democratic polity and a capitalist-oriented mixed economy. The protocols and norms used to accomplish this involve a commitment to representative and participatory democracy, measures for income redistribution, regulation of the economy in the general interest and social-welfare provisions. Due to longstanding governance by social-democratic parties during the post-war consensus and their influence on socioeconomic policy in Northern and Western Europe, social democracy became associated with Keynesianism, the Nordic model, the social-liberal paradigm and welfare states within political circles in the late 20th century. It has been described as the most common form of Western or modern socialism as well as the reformist wing of democratic socialism.
Types of socialism include a range of economic and social systems characterised by social ownership and democratic control of the means of production and organizational self-management of enterprises as well as the political theories and movements associated with socialism. Social ownership may refer to forms of public, collective or cooperative ownership, or to citizen ownership of equity in which surplus value goes to the working class and hence society as a whole. There are many varieties of socialism and no single definition encapsulates all of them, but social ownership is the common element shared by its various forms.
The ideology of the Communist Party of China has undergone dramatic changes throughout the years, especially during Deng Xiaoping's leadership and now Xi Jinping's leadership. While foreign commentators have accused the Communist Party of China (CPC) of lacking a coherent ideology, the CPC still identifies as a communist party.
Orthodox Marxism is the body of Marxist thought that emerged after the death of Karl Marx (1818–1883) and which became the official philosophy of the socialist movement as represented in the Second International until the First World War in 1914. Orthodox Marxism aims to simplify, codify and systematize Marxist method and theory by clarifying the perceived ambiguities and contradictions of classical Marxism.