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AP Comaprative Government Vocabulary Study Guide

  civil liberties—limits set on government so that it cannot abuse its power and interfere with the lives of its citizens. democracy—a political system in which citizens enjoy a number of basic civil and political rights, and in which their most important political leaders are elected in free and fair elections and accountable under a rule of law  democratization—the process of developing democratic states governments—are organizations of individuals who are legally empowered to make binding decisions on behalf of a particular community nations—a group of people with a common identity nation-states—where national identification and the scope of legal authority largely coincide political cleavages— national, ethnic, linguistic, and religious differences political cultures—public attitudes towards politics and their role with the political system political system—is a set of institutions, such as parliaments, bureaucracies, and courts, that formulate and implement the collective goals of a society or of groups within it state—a political system that has sovereignty based on the recognized right of self-determination  2  environment—in systems theory, everything lying outside the political system functions—basic activities of government (operating school systems to fighting wars) interest aggregation—combining demands from government into policy alternatives for which substantial political support can be mobilized interest articulation—what individuals and groups in government or society want to get from politics political regime—the structural-functional-policy configuration governments take on at different times political recruitment—the selection of people for political activity political socialization—families, schools, communications media, churches, and all various political structures that develop, reinforce, and transform attitudes of political significance in the society political system—a set of institutions, such as parliaments, bureaucracies, and courts, that formulate and implement the collective goals of a society or of groups within it; (2) a set of institutions and agencies concerned with formulating and implementing the collective goals of a society or of groups within it structural-functional approach—a method used in comparative government to analyze nations based on the structure and functions of their political system system functions—socialization, recruitment, communication   3  agents of political socialization—institutions and organizations that influence political attitudes democratization—a trend towards democracy as the preferred political system legitimacy—feeling of obligation to obey the law marketization—an acceptance of free markets and private profit incentives to run an economy modernization— to process in which society goes through industrialization, urbanization and other social changes that completely transforms the lives of individuals parochials—people who are hardly aware of government and politics participants—citizens involved as actual or potential participants in the political system political culture—public attitudes towards politics and their role within the political system political socialization—how individuals form their political attitudes subjects—citizens who passively obey government officials and the law, but do not vote or actively involve themselves in politics  4  anomic groups—generally spontaneous groups that form suddenly when many individuals respond similarly to frustration, disappointment, or other strong emotions associational groups—groups formed explicitly to represent the interests of a particular group civil society—a society in which people are involved in social and political interactions free of state control or regulation controlled interest group system—characteristics: 1. there is a single group for each social sector, 2. membership is often compulsory, 3. each group in normally hierarchically organized, 4. group are controlled by the government or its agents in order to mobilize support for government policy democratic corporatist interest group system—characteristics: 1. a single peak association normally represents each societal interest, 2. membership in the peak association is often compulsory and nearly universal, 3. peak associations are centrally organized and direct the actions of their members, 4. groups are often systematically involved in making and implementing policy institutional groups—formal groups with other political or social functions in addition to interest articulation interest articulation—the way citizens and social groups express their needs and demands to the government mass media—television, radio, newspaper, magazines, and the Internet non-associational group—groups based on common interests and identities of ethnicity, region, religion, occupation, or perhaps kinship pluralist interest group system—characteristics: 1. multiple groups may represent a single societal interest, 2. group membership is voluntary and limited, 3. Groups often have a loose or decentralized organizational structure, 4. there is a clear separation between interest groups and the government  5 accommodative party systems—mixed characteristics of the consensual and conflictual system associational groups—groups formed explicitly to represent the interests of a particular group authoritarian party systems—a party system that tries to direct society competitive party systems—party systems that try to build electoral support conflictual party system—the legislature is dominated by parties that are far apart on issues or are highly antagonistic toward each other and the party system consensual party systems—major parties are similar on policies and have a reasonable amount of trust in each other and the political system institutional groups—formal groups with other political or social functions in addition to interest articulation interest aggregation—the activity in which the political demands of individuals and groups are combined into policy programs patron-client network—a structure in which a central officeholder, authority figure, or group provides benefits to supporters in exchange for their loyalty proportional representation— a category of electoral formula aiming at a close match between the percentage of votes that groups of candidates (grouped by a certain measure) obtain in elections and the percentage of seats they receive 6 authoritarian regimes—a government where the leaders exercise almost total control of the political and economic systems cabinet—the most important collective decision making body; close advisors to the chief executive confidence relationship—the prime minister must enjoy the confidence of the parliamentary majority at all times constitutional regimes—systems in which the powers of various government units are defined and limited by a written constitution, statutes, and custom  democratic presidential regime—the independence of the legislative and executive functions in emphasized federal system—a system where central and local units each has autonomy in particular spheres of public policy judicial review—the power of a court to review the actions of public sector bodies in terms of their legality or constitutionality parliamentary regimes—the executive and legislative are interdependent policymaking—the stage in the political process where bills become law or edicts are issued by rulers separation of powers—a policy and theory that the legislative, executive, and judicial functions of government should be separated  7 distribution—the act of the government allocation resources that it has extracted to the people extraction—the collection of resources by the government to carry out public policy neotraditional political system—political systems that emphasize stability and the maintenance of an established order; ex. Saudi Arabia night watchman state—a Lockean state where the government limits itself to preserving law, order, and commerce, and protection of its citizens police state—a state with intrusive regulations and extreme extractions of resources; typically associated with totalitarian regimes public policies--authoritative public decisions that government makes regulatory state—a response to the growing complexities of modern life; access is limited to certain goods and services and an increasing number of laws seek to modify and change behavior symbolic policies—speeches, holidays, and monuments to build loyalty and allegiance to the government system goods—characteristics of a functioning and effective political system; order, predictability and stability welfare state—a state emphasizing its distributive activities to provide for health, education, education, employment, housing, and income support with requires high levels of extraction  


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