Short Paragraph on Political Science!
State is as old as History and Political Science is as old as State. As a subject of study, Political Science had its birth right after the origin of the State.
Since then it continues to be a subject involved in the study of State and all other political institutions which are carrying out the functions of State. In contemporary it is a very popular and useful subject of study.
To begin with, the subject which studied state (called Polis’ in the Greek), came to be designated as Politics. In the ancient Greece, Aristotle was the first political thinker who made a systematic study of state, which was then known as ‘Polis.’ He named his work Politics. Consequently, Politics came to be known as the subject involved with the study of the Polis i.e. the State, and Aristotle earned the name: ‘the Father of Political Science’.
Later on, while some philosophers called it Political Philosophy, others called it Political Economy. Still later, a large number of political thinkers began calling it Political Science and defined it as the study of state.
In the early 20th century, almost all the political scientists agreed upon the name Political Science and defined it as the study of State and Government. They were not prepared to call it Politics because of the belief that it was the name of current affairs, policies and activities of political parties and political leaders.
In the second half of the 20th century, several modern political scientists adopted the view that since their object of study was politics i.e. human political behaviour and relations, it could be legitimately called Politics. They refused to accept any distinction between Politics and Political Science. Consequently, they again started using the name Politics.
Gradually, this view was accepted by a very large majority of political scientists and it got the name modern view of Political Science/Politics. However, some political scientists still continue to uphold the traditional view of Political Science.
It is, therefore, essential that we must study both the Traditional and Modern views of Political Science.
Traditional View of Political Science:
In its traditional form Political Science is still defined as the subject concerned with the study of State and Government. Traditional political scientists hold the view that there is a ‘real’ difference between Political Science and Politics.
The former refers to the science or theory of State and Government, and the latter refers to the study of current problems and issues faced by the government of the state. Party politics is considered to be a part of the domain of Politics and not of Political Science.
Modern View of Political Science:
The traditional view of Political Science is held to be unscientific and inadequate by the modern view. It holds that since Political Science studies Politics it can be called Politics. Politics is the science of political relations and interactions. Political relations are those relations which are characterized by power to a large extent.
There is to distinction between Politics and Political Science and as such Politics is an appropriate name to describe the study of political relations and processes. Modern view defines Politics i.e. Political Science as the science which studies political relations i.e. power relations in society.