This major book provides an up-to-date and state-of-the-art overview of the contemporary theory and practice of the most central concept in political science: power. The concept of political power is introduced within a three-part framework: contemporary theories of power; applications of power processes and practices; and the implications of modern power flows across the globe today. The book explores the many structures of power in the contemporary world from theories of its construction and use, to its operation in policy networks, and its wider exercise at different levels in the political process, from the local to the global. Amongst the many themes explored are the reproduction and

General Introduction: Power in Contemporary Politics

General introduction: Power in contemporary politics

Power has always been the most fundamental concept in the study of politics. Many other concepts are also vitally important to understanding the nature of politics, including justice, culture, equality, class, rational choice and many more. But in the history of political theory and political science since their origins in ancient Greece, power has constantly stood out as the single most important defining conceptual issue. With the development of the modern social sciences since the late nineteenth century, the problem of power has generally been seen as the very core of the emerging and developing discipline of political science as well as of cognate disciplines and subdisciplines such as political sociology, political economy, political ...

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