Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs)

Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and international non-governmental organizations (INGOs) are umbrella terms that refer to organizations not directly controlled by the state or governments, mostly concerned with human rights of various kinds (including civic and political, economic and social, and environmental rights), professional and occupational interests, and various other enthusiasms. They range from very large organizations […]

Political Sociology

Political sociology analyzes the operation of power at all levels of social life: individual, organizational, communal, national, and international. Although Aristotle, Ibn Khaldun, or Montesquieu could claim to have founded political sociology, most political sociologists trace their intellectual lineage to Marx or Weber. Political sociology emerged as a distinct subfield in the 1950s, especially in […]

Politics

The discipline of sociology has generated few outright political classics. One of the sociology classics, Max Weber’s Economy and Society, contributed a great deal to the understanding of political behavior. Yet it is not a political work in the sense that Aristotle’s Politics or Hobbes’ Leviathan is. Economy and Society sometimes hints at but it […]

Populism

Populism is a concept that is used in a variety of ways (as an economic, social and/or political term, a version of democracy or authoritarianism, etc.), to describe a variety of phenomena (governments, leaders, ideologies, economic systems, a type of discourse) in a variety of historical moments (most notably since the 1940s but with notable […]

Revolutions

Revolutions have helped define the modern age, associated with the emergence of democracy, capitalism, and socialism. Inspiring attempts to make a better world, they have typically fallen short of the goals of their makers. ”Social revolutions are rapid, basic transformations of a society’s state and class structures . . . in part carried through by […]

Politics of Social Problems

The sociology of social problems always has to be a historical and sociological analysis of the politics of social problems and their social control. Whereas the constructionist perspective of sociology of social problems is concerned with the construction of social problems categories in society, the politics of social problems emphasizes the political processes in the […]

Socialism

Socialism refers to those practices and doctrines based on, and emphasizing the benefits of, collective property, social equality, human cooperation and communal forms of economic and political association. Yet, beyond these shared features, socialism as both practice and doctrine is characterized by tremendous diversity. This is evident in the historical development of socialism. First used […]

State

Few concepts are as central to social analysis and political practice as the state. Many assume that the state is synonymous with the elected government. All the non-elected state administrators, coercive apparatuses, and sociocultural institutions that constitute modern states are often ignored. Despite the crucial nature of state power, major political and methodological disputes remain […]

War

War – oftentimes defined as long-lasting conflict between political groups (especially states or nation-states) and carried out by armed forces – has never been at the center of sociological theorizing. This has something to do with the historical origins of sociology which regarded itself as the science of capitalist and industrial society, a type of […]

World Conflict

”World conflicts” are not limited to the violence of all-out war. ”Terrorism” currently refers to non-state violence directed at civilians and combatants in contests of will, power, and systems. Terrorism also includes any kind of organized violence against civilians. Hence, nations killing their own or other civilians qualify as ”state terrorists” as distinct from ”extra-state […]

Development: Political Economy

The emergence of the idea of development in western culture is closely linked to the evolutionary worldview that began to gain ground in Europe in the eighteenth century. Their common denominator can be seen in the idea of continuous social change usually proceeding in distinct stages and entailing an improvement of living conditions. In the […]

Political Economy

Political economy refers to a branch of the social sciences that analyzes how socio-economic activities are regulated in different institutional contexts, underlining the reciprocal influences among economic, social, and political factors. Over recent decades, this field of research has witnessed a remarkable revival, especially in economics, political science, and sociology. The origin of the term, […]

Privatization

Privatization is a transfer of public services provided by various levels of governments in national states to the private sector of business. It is a relatively recent transformation of governance and markets in countries worldwide. In fact, it is an extraordinary, rapidly expanding phenomenon that is rising in global waves, transferring ownership from governments to […]

State and Economy

HOW DOES CAPITALISM AFFECT DEMOCRATIC STATES? Pluralists argue that a wide variety of economic actors, including representatives from business, labor, consumers, and others, struggle to influence the policy making process. Policymakers tend to respond most favorably to those groups who have the most resources, organizational skills, and access to policymakers. Other scholars maintain that the […]

Welfare State

The essence of the modern welfare state lies in the institutional commitment to reconcile equity issues with the efficient operation of markets in industrial and post-industrial capitalist societies. Since capitalism institutionally relies on the free competition of autonomous agents in markets to achieve economic efficiency, the unfettered operation of competitive forces is unlikely to result […]