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Introduction to Politics

Fifth Edition

Robert Garner, Peter Ferdinand, and Stephanie Lawson

Publication Date - 09 May 2023

ISBN: 9780192847713

632 pages
9.7 x 7.4 inches

In Stock


Combining theory, comparative politics, and international relations Introduction to Politics, Fifth Edition, provides a comprehensive introduction to the subject for first year undergraduate students. As the only introductory text to cover both comparative politics and international relations, it is the most authoritative and global introductory politics textbook on the market.

Written by three experts in the field, this book takes a balanced approach to the subject, serving as a strong foundation for further study. Assuming no prior knowledge, the authors use an accessible yet analytical approach which encourages critical analysis and debate, helping students to develop the skills that will be vital to their future studies and employment.

The new edition has been fully updated with additional up-to-date case studies and examples to help students relate their studies to real-world events. The fifth edition includes coverage of the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on global politics; provides an overview of Russia's imperial history, and the political economy of sanctions; a new section on decolonising political thinking; and additional examples from Non-Western settings throughout the text. This ensures that Introduction to Politics, Fifth Edition, is the most comprehensive, global, and essential guide for students new to the study of Politics.

The fifth edition includes a wealth of embedded digital resources, which are accessible through the enhanced e-book. These include:

- Multiple-choice questions for every section, designed to reinforce your understanding of key points through frequent and cumulative revision, and to assist with independent self-study

- Political scenarios which encourage you to apply your learning to a practical case to see how the content of the text can be reflected in real life.

- A library of web links to relevant blogs, debates, and videos, to help explore your research interests and take your learning further

- Videos of news reports, speeches, analysis, and key events help bring theories and concepts to life, exploring issues such as 'are Western values still relevant?' and 'Will China Become the Centre of the World Economy?'

- An interactive flashcard glossary to test your knowledge and understanding of each chapter's key terms

Teaching resources for adopting lecturers include:

- Customisable PowerPoint slides that can be adapted for use in lectures

- Discussion questions that lecturers can use to engage their students, based on the content of each chapter

- A bank of questions for lecturers to use to test students' understanding of key concepts covered in the chapters

New to this Edition

  • Each chapter has been fully updated to reflect changes in the political landscape, including the Covid-19 pandemic, changing state responsibilities, Russia's invasion of Ukraine, and threats to the international order
  • Includes further coverage of race, gender analysis, political institutions, climate change, and challenges to state power
  • New and updated learning features throughout the book introduce students to key concepts, key quotes, case studies, key thinkers, and key debates
  • Additional real-world, topical examples and case-studies, such as Russia's imperial history and its implication for contemporary global politics, are included to help students contextualise theories and approaches


  • The only book to combine concepts and ideologies, comparative politics, and international relations in one volume, to provide a fully comprehensive introduction for undergraduates
  • Includes a wide range of contemporary and historical case studies from across the globe, helping to contextualise the material for students
  • The book moves beyond a descriptive narrative, taking an analytical approach that ensures students are challenged to form their own ideas and perspectives
  • Now available as an e-book enhanced with embedded self-assessment activities and multi-media content to offer a fully immersive experience and extra learning support

About the Author(s)

Robert Garner is Emeritus Professor of Politics at the University of Leicester, United Kingdom.

Peter Ferdinand is an Emeritus Reader in Politics and International Studies at the University of Warwick, United Kingdom.

Stephanie Lawson is Honorary Professor of Politics and International Studies at Macquarie University, Honorary Professor of Pacific Affairs, Australian National University, and Senior Research Associate, Faculty of Humanities, University of Johannesburg.

Table of Contents

    1. Introduction: The Nature of Politics and Political Analysis
    Part 1: Concepts and Ideologies
    2. Politics and the State
    3. Political Power, Authority, and the State
    4. Democracy and Political Obligation
    5. Freedom and Justice
    6. Traditional Ideologies
    7. Challenges to the Dominant Ideologies
    Part 2: Comparative Politics
    8. Institutions and States
    9. Political Culture and Non-Western Political Ideas
    10. Laws, Constitutions, and Federalism
    11. Votes, Elections, Legislatures, and Legislators
    12. Political Parties
    13. Executives, Bureaucracies, Policy Studies, and Governance
    14. Civil Society, Interest Groups, and the Media
    15. Democracies, Democratization, and Authoritarian Regimes
    Part 3: Global Politics
    16. Introducing Global Politics
    17. Traditional Theories in Global Politics
    18. Critical Approaches to Global Politics
    19. Security and Insecurity
    20. Diplomacy and Foreign Policy
    21. International Organizations in Global Politics
    22. Global Political Economy
    23. Conclusion: Towards a Globalizing, Post-Western-Dominated World

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