Study Cards on political, normative, tradition

What does normative and objective mean?
Normative = the prescription of values and standards of conduct: what 'should be' rather than what 'is'

Objective = External to the observer, demonstrable; untainted by feelings, values or bias
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What was the meaning of studying politics in the philosophical tradition?
Essentially prescriptive or normative questions reflecting on what should be instead of what is => Plato
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What is studying politics in the empirical tradition?
The attempt to offer a dispassionate and impartial view of political reality and is therefore descriptive.
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What is the empirical approach of politics?
Attempt to offer a dispassionate and impartial account of political reality. Analyse and explain. Makes judgements and offers recommendations. Observation and experiment.
Led to positivism (stick to methods of the natural science).
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What is the approach of behaviouralism?
Beginning 1900's: political analysis drawing on behaviouralism. Observable behaviour offering quantifiable data for research.
But from 1960's: criticism. behaviouralism had constrained the scope of political analysis (only looking at the observable), concepts with no empirically verifiable entities were being discarded.
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When did behaviourlism rise and why?
In the mid-nineteenth century because of positivism; the theory that all social enquiry should adhere to the methods of natural sciences
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Why did behaviourlism come under growing pressure from the 1960s?
Because they thought it had significantly constrained the scope of political analysis and a generation of political scientists had turned their backs on the entire tradition of normative political thought.
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What were the main critics on rational-choice theory?
People seldom possess a clear set of goals and rarely make decisions in the light of full and accurate knowledge and they didn't pay enough attention to socially formed preferences instead of innate (aangeboren) features
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What is the game theory?
A way of exploring problems of conflict or collaboration by explaining how one actor's choice of strategy affects another's best choice and vice versa
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What are the 3 new ideas about rules from the new institutionalism?
1) Institutions are no longer matched with political organizations, they are rules that guide the behaviour of individuals
2) Institutions are rather seen as unwritten conventions than formal arrangements
3) Institutions are more embedded in a particular normative and historical context
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How are critical approaches to politics critical?
- they seek to contest the political status quo, by aligning themselves with the interest of marginalized or oppressed groups.
seek to uncover inequalities (feminism, marxism).
- they emphasize the role of consciousness in shaping social conduct and, therefore, the political world.  Subject approaches to critical scrutiny (constructivism, poststructuralism).
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What does post - postivism mean?
An approach to knowledge that qustions the idea of an 'objective' reality, emphasizing instead the extent to which people conceive, or 'construct', the world in which they live.

-> post - structalism emerged alongside. This emphasized that all ideas and concepts are expressed in a language which itself is enmeshed in complex relations of power
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What doest discourse and deconstruction mean?
Discourse = Human interaction, especially communication, discourse may disclose or illustrate power relations

Deconstruction = A close reading of philosophical or other texts with an eye to their various blind spots and/or contradictions
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