43 terms

Unit 2 Forms and Systems of Government

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Direct Democracy
People govern and vote themselves for nearly everything. Ancient Athens was an example of this form of government
Republic / Representative Democracy
People choose leaders to represent them and make decisions on their behalf. Ancient Rome and the United States are examples of this type of this government.
Constitutional Monarchy
A government with a hereditary monarch that acts a symbol of the country, but has very limited power or merely a ceremonial role. Great Britain, Spain, and Jordan are examples of this form of government.
Absolute Monarchy
This is where a king or queen hold all political power. Most European countries were this form of government prior to the 1600s. Today Saudi Arabia and the Vatican are considered this form.
Oligarchy
This means rule by few. Ancient Sparta or China could be considered this form. For this form, think of the mafia or a conspiracy group controlling society behind the scenes.
Autocracy
This means rule by one. Today North Korea and Turkmenistan are considered this form. These are usually dictatorships, like Nazi Germany.
Socialism
This means the government directs the economy through some form of redistribution of wealth. For this form, think of free government programs and services, like public education, social security, and food stamps.
Communism
An extreme kind of socialism where all property, production, and distribution is owned by the government, who tries to redistribute everything equally. China and Cuba are modern examples of this form of government. Historically, it is seen a revolution of the working class to overthrow the oppressive wealthy class.
Federalism
In this system of government power is shared between the national and state levels. The United States is an example of this kind of system.
Confederal
In this system of government power is mostly held at the state or regional level and there is a very weak national government. The United States used to be this system prior to 1787. During the American Civil War, the Confederacy held this kind of system (hence their name).
Unitary
In this system of government power is mostly held at the national level and the states cannot do anything without its permission. The United Kingdom is a modern example of this kind of system.*
Parliamentary
In this system of government, the executive is chosen by the legislative branch and he acts as both branches. In this system the executive is called the prime minister. In some countries, the monarch appoints prime minister.*
citizen
a person who lives in a country
role of a citizen
the amount of freedom and say a person has in their country
Unitary
a system of government where almost all power is located with the central government
Federal
a system of government where power is shared between a central government and states
Confederation
a system of government where power is located with independent countries and there is little power in the central government
autocracy
a form of government where one person has unlimited power
democracy
a system of government in which political power is held by the people
direct democracy
a form of government in which the people have a say in every political decision
representative democracy
a form of government in which the people elect representatives to make policies and laws for them
oligarchy
a form of government in which only a select few elite people make decisions for the rest of the group
autocracy
a system of government by one person with absolute power.
communism
an economic system in which the central government directs all major economic decisions
confederal
Governmental system in which states keep full control over their territiories and people
States have all the power.
dictatorship
A form of government in which the leader has absolute power and authority.
direct democracy
A form of government in which citizens rule directly and not through representatives; a system of rule that permits citizens to vote directly on laws and policies
federal
A system in which power is divided between the national and state governments
legislature
A group of people who have the power to make laws; the legislative body of a country or state.
limited government
The government has only the powers that the constitution gives it
monarchy
A government ruled by a king or queen
oligarchy
Rule by few, small group of people (typically wealthy)
parliamentary
The executive and legislative branches of government are combined; people vote for a legislature who then elect a leader (prime minister)
representative democracy
a form of democracy in which citizens elect officials to govern on their behalf
republic
A form of government in which citizens choose their leaders by voting
socialism
a system in which the government owns and operates a country's means of production
unitary
A government in which the power is held by one central authority
limited monarchy
government in which a constitution or legislative body limits the monarch's powers
self-government
the right of people to rule themselves independently
absolute monarchy
A government in which the king or queen has absolute power.
governor
the elected executive head of a state of the US.
president
Head of the Executive Branch; the elected head of a republican state.
prime minister
official who heads the government in a parliamentary democracy

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