Introduction to the Study of American Government

24 terms by ellesee24 

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Vocabulary

Power

The ability of one person to cause another person to act in accordance with the first person's intentions

Political Power

Power when used to determine who will hold government office and how government will behave

Authority

The right to exercise political power

Legitimacy

The widely-shared perception that something or someone should be obeyed

Representative Democracy

conferring political power on those selected by the voters in competitive elections

Polis

Term for Greek city-state

Elite(political)

An identifiable group of people with a disproportionate share of political power

City-State

A relatively small political unit within which classical democracy was practiced

Majoritarian Politics

A political system in which the choices of the political leaders are closely constrained by the preferences of the people

Aristotle

A philosopher who defined democracy as the "rule of many"

Marxist Theory

A theory that government is merely a reflection of underlying economic forces

Mills

A sociologist who presented the idea of a mostly nongovernmental power elite

Hamilton

Individual who worried the new government he helped to create would be too democratic

Weber

A sociologist who emphasized the phenomenon of bureaucracy in explaining political developments

Community Control

A political system in which local citizens are empowered to govern themselves directly

Citizen Participation

A political system in which those affected by a governmental program must be permitted to participate in the program's formulation

New England Town Meeting

A North American approximation of direct or participatory democracy

Pluralist Theory

A theory that no one interest group consistently holds political power

Bureaucracy

Structures of authority organized around expertise and specialization

Schumpeter

An economist who defined democracy as the competitive struggle by political leaders for the people's vote

Bureaucratic Theory

A theory that appointed civil servants make the key governing decisions

Democracy

A term used to describe three different political systems in which the people are said to rule, directly or indirectly

Direct or Participatory Democracy

A political system in which all or most citizens participate directly by either holding office or making policy

Elitist Theory

A theory that a few top leaders make the key decisions without reference to popular desires

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