The American Democracy, 10th Edition (Patterson)

Chapter 1: Political Thinking: Becoming a responsible Citizen


authority  The recognized right of officials to exercise power as a result of the positions they hold.
constitutionalism  The idea that there are definable limits on the rightful power of a government over its citizens.
corporate power  The power that corporations exercise in their effort to influence government and maintain control of the workplace.
democracy  A form of government in which the people govern, either directly or through elected representatives.
elitism  The notion that wealthy and well-connected individuals exercise power over certain areas of public policy.
free market system  An economic system based on the idea that government should interfere with economic transactions as little as possible. Free enterprise and self-reliance are the collective and individual principles that underpin free markets.
judicial action  The use of courts of law as a means by which individuals protect their rights and settle their conflicts.
majoritarianism  The idea that the majority prevails not only in elections but also in policy determination.
pluralsim  A theory of American politics that holds that society’s interests are substantially represented through power exercised by groups.
political science  The systematic study of government and politics.
political thinking  The careful gathering and sifting of information in the process of forming a knowledgeable view about a political issue.
politics  The process through which a society settles its conflicts
power  The ability of persons, groups, or institutions to influence political developments.
public policies  Decisions by government to pursue particular courses of action.
Patterson Tenth Edition Large Cover
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