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DegreeBachelor Degree Programme
Course CodeBPSC-133
Programme NameBachelor of Arts (General)
Programme CodeBAG
Total Marks100
Assignment CodeBPSC-133/ASST/TMA/2022-23
Last Date for Submission of Assignment:For June Examination: 31st April
For December Examination: 30th September

Assignment – I

Answer the following in about 500 words each.

1.Examine the characteristic features of democratic regimes. What challenges do they face in developing states?

Ans: Democratic regimes are characterized by several key features, including free and fair elections, a multiparty system, protection of individual rights and freedoms, and the rule of law. In a democratic regime, the power to govern is derived from the consent of the governed, and citizens have the right to participate in the political process through voting, petitioning the government, and running for political office.

Another important feature of democratic regimes is a free and independent press, which provides citizens with access to information and allows them to hold the government accountable. Additionally, democratic regimes often have a robust civil society, where non-government organizations and advocacy groups can organize and advocate for their interests.

However, despite these strengths, democratic regimes can face significant challenges in developing states. One of the most significant challenges is the lack of democratic institutions and infrastructure. In many developing countries, political parties may be weak, and the government may lack the capacity to carry out democratic processes and ensure the rule of law.

Another major challenge is corruption. Corruption can undermine the integrity of elections and the rule of law, and it can limit citizens’ ability to participate in the political process and hold the government accountable. Corruption can also undermine the ability of the government to effectively provide essential services, such as health care and education.

A related challenge is the lack of economic development. In many developing countries, poverty and income inequality can limit citizens’ ability to participate in the political process and can contribute to political instability. Additionally, lack of economic opportunities can lead to mass migration, which can further strain political institutions and stability.

Another challenge facing democratic regimes in developing states is the presence of violent conflict. In some countries, ethnic, religious, or other types of tensions can lead to violence and undermine the stability of the state. Additionally, conflict can limit the ability of citizens to participate in the political process and can make it difficult for the government to effectively provide essential services.

Finally, democratic regimes in developing states may also face challenges from external actors, such as other countries, international organizations, and non-state actors. These actors can have a significant impact on the stability and development of democratic regimes, and they can pose significant challenges for the government in terms of ensuring national security and protecting the rights and freedoms of citizens.

2. What are pressure groups? Examine their role in modern political systems.

Ans: Pressure groups, also known as interest groups, are organizations that seek to influence public policy and the decisions of government bodies by advocating for specific causes or issues. Pressure groups can range from large, well-funded organizations with a national or even international presence to smaller, community-based groups with a more localized focus.

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One of the key roles of pressure groups in modern political systems is to provide a voice for marginalized or underrepresented groups in society. For example, advocacy groups for the elderly, the disabled, and minority groups can provide these communities with a platform to voice their concerns and advocate for their interests. This can help to ensure that the needs and perspectives of these groups are taken into consideration by policymakers.

Another important role of pressure groups is to provide information and expertise to policymakers on complex issues. For example, groups representing environmental, scientific, or medical organizations can provide valuable insights and data to policymakers on issues such as climate change, public health, and technological advancements. This helps policymakers to make informed decisions that are in the best interests of the public.

Pressure groups can also play a significant role in shaping public opinion and mobilizing public support for specific causes. For example, advocacy groups for gun control or marriage equality can use a variety of tactics, such as media campaigns, lobbying, and grassroots organizing, to build public support for their cause and influence the decisions of policymakers.

However, pressure groups can also pose challenges to the democratic process. Some groups may have significant resources and influence, while others may not. This can create an unequal playing field in which some groups have more power to influence policy decisions than others. Additionally, some groups may pursue their agendas in ways that are unethical or undemocratic, such as by using false information or by using their financial resources to unduly influence policymakers.

To mitigate these challenges, many modern political systems have implemented a variety of measures to regulate the activities of pressure groups. For example, in some countries, groups must register with the government and disclose their funding sources. Additionally, some countries have implemented limits on political campaign spending by interest groups, or require groups to abide by strict ethical codes when lobbying policymakers.

Assignment – II

Answer the following questions in about 250 words each.

3. What are various explanations for the intervention of military in politics?

Ans: The intervention of military in politics can be explained by a variety of factors, including the desire to protect national interests, maintain stability, or achieve certain goals.

One explanation is the concept of military intervention as a means of preserving national security and stability. When a country is facing a major threat to its security or stability, the military may be called upon to intervene in order to restore order and prevent the situation from deteriorating further.

Another explanation for military intervention in politics is to achieve certain political or economic goals. For example, military intervention in a foreign country may be intended to secure valuable resources or to install a government that is more favorable to the intervening country’s interests.

In some cases, military intervention may also be driven by ideology or a desire to spread a particular political system. For example, the United States has intervened in several countries in the past to promote democracy and human rights.

Additionally, military intervention can also be a result of military coups or revolutions, where the military takes control of the government in order to effect change. This type of intervention can occur when a country is experiencing political, social or economic unrest and the military sees itself as the only institution capable of restoring order.

4. Briefly describe the plurality and majority systems of representation.

Ans: Plurality and majority systems of representation are two different methods used in elections to determine the winner.

Plurality system, also known as first-past-the-post, is a simple voting system where the candidate with the most votes wins the election, regardless of whether or not they receive a majority of the votes. In this system, each voter is only allowed to vote for one candidate and the candidate with the highest number of votes wins. This system is commonly used in countries such as the United States and the United Kingdom.

On the other hand, the majority system requires a candidate to receive more than 50% of the votes in order to be elected. This system is designed to ensure that the winning candidate has a clear mandate from the voters, as they have received more than half of the votes cast. The majority system is often used in elections for high-level positions such as the presidency, where it is important to have a clear winner.

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One of the main benefits of the plurality system is that it is simple and straightforward. This system also tends to produce decisive results, as there is only one winner in each election. However, the system can also lead to the election of candidates who do not have the support of a majority of the voters.

On the other hand, the majority system ensures that the winning candidate has broad support among the voters. This system also tends to produce more stable governments, as the winning candidate has a clear mandate from the voters. However, the majority system can also lead to the election of candidates who do not have a strong mandate, as they may have won with only a small majority of the votes.

5. Briefly describe the three dominant approaches to globalisation.

Ans: Globalization is a complex and multifaceted phenomenon that has been approached from a variety of perspectives. Three of the most dominant approaches to globalization are: economic, cultural, and political.

The economic approach to globalization focuses on the increasing interconnectedness of economies and the increasing flow of goods, services, capital, and labor across national borders. This approach highlights the role of trade, investment, and technological innovation in driving globalization and argues that globalization is primarily an economic process.

The cultural approach to globalization emphasizes the increasing exchange of cultural goods and ideas across borders. This perspective argues that globalization has led to the spread of Western culture and the erosion of traditional cultural practices. It also highlights the role of new communication technologies in facilitating cultural exchange and the creation of global cultural flows.

The political approach to globalization emphasizes the role of states and international organizations in shaping the process of globalization. This perspective argues that globalization is not simply an economic or cultural phenomenon, but is also shaped by political power dynamics. This approach highlights the role of international institutions, such as the World Trade Organization, in regulating global economic and political relations and the impact of globalization on national sovereignty and the distribution of power in the international system.

Assignment – III

Answer the following questions in about 100 words each.

6. What is the role of the state from the perspective of neo-pluralism?

Ans: From the perspective of neo-pluralism, the role of the state is seen as one of facilitator rather than a central decision-maker. Neo-pluralism recognizes that power in society is not solely held by the state, but is distributed among a range of actors, including interest groups, the media, and private corporations. The state’s role is to balance the competing demands and interests of these different actors and facilitate the development of policies that reflect the broader public interest. This means that the state must actively engage with and listen to the demands of different interest groups and respond to the changing needs and priorities of society. The state is seen as a broker, mediating between different interests and helping to find common ground and solutions that serve the public good.

7. Differentiate between decentralisation of power and non-centralisation of power.

Ans: Decentralization of power refers to the transfer of authority and decision-making responsibility from a central government or agency to lower levels of government, such as regional or local authorities, or to autonomous organizations and institutions. This process aims to distribute power more evenly across different levels of government and to give local communities more control over decision-making that affects their lives.

On the other hand, non-centralization of power refers to the absence of a central authority or decision-making body. In a non-centralized system, power is not transferred from a central authority to other levels of government or organizations, but rather is distributed widely and evenly among multiple actors and institutions. This approach is often associated with systems of direct democracy, in which decisions are made through consensus and direct participation of the citizenry.

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In short, decentralization of power refers to a process of transferring power from the central government to other levels of government or organizations, while non-centralization of power refers to a system in which there is no central authority and power is distributed more evenly among multiple actors and institutions.

8. Comment on the use of historical method in comparative studies.

Ans: The use of historical method in comparative studies involves analyzing the development of political and social phenomena over time in different countries or regions. This approach helps to provide a deeper understanding of the factors that have shaped the political and social landscape of a country, and how these factors have influenced the development of particular institutions, norms, and practices.

For example, a comparative study of the development of democracy in different countries may use the historical method to examine the historical context in which different democracies emerged, the processes that led to their establishment, and the challenges they faced along the way. This approach can help to identify common patterns and similarities in the development of democracy across different countries, as well as the unique circumstances and factors that have shaped the democratic systems in each country.

The historical method is particularly useful in comparative studies as it allows researchers to place the development of political and social phenomena in a broader historical context and to identify the underlying causes and drivers of change. This approach can help to shed light on the complex interactions between political, social, and economic factors, and to provide a more nuanced and nuanced understanding of the political and social dynamics of different countries.

9. Describe the functions of political parties in democratic politics.

Ans: Political parties play a central role in democratic politics. They serve several important functions, including:

  1. Representation: Political parties provide a voice for different groups and interests in society, allowing citizens to have a say in government decisions and policies.
  2. Competition: Political parties provide competition and choice in elections, allowing citizens to vote for the party and candidate that best represents their interests and values.
  3. Ideological clarity: Political parties provide a clear ideological platform, making it easier for citizens to understand the different policy positions of different parties and to make informed decisions in elections.
  4. Policy formulation: Political parties play a crucial role in formulating and articulating policy proposals, providing citizens with a clear choice in elections on how to address different social and economic issues.
  5. Organizing and mobilizing: Political parties provide a means for citizens to organize and mobilize, encouraging active participation in the political process and promoting democratic accountability.

These functions of political parties are essential for the proper functioning of democratic politics, as they help to ensure that different interests and perspectives are represented in government and that citizens have the information and tools they need to make informed decisions in elections.

10. What are the core assumptions of neo-Marxism?

Ans: Neo-Marxism is a political and economic theory that builds upon the ideas of Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels. The core assumptions of neo-Marxism include:

  1. Historical materialism: The idea that social and economic conditions are the primary determinants of human history and culture.
  2. Class struggle: The belief that history is characterized by ongoing conflicts between social classes, with the dominant class using its power to maintain control and exploit the working class.
  3. Capitalist exploitation: The notion that capitalism is a system of exploitation, where the owners of capital appropriate the surplus value produced by workers.
  4. Dialectical materialism: The idea that social and economic relations are in constant flux and that contradictions within these relations will eventually lead to a fundamental transformation of society.
  5. The state as an instrument of class rule: The belief that the state is not neutral, but is controlled by the dominant class and used to maintain its power and control over the working class.

These core assumptions form the basis for neo-Marxist analysis of society and the political and economic systems that shape it. They also inform neo-Marxist prescriptions for social and economic change, including the creation of a socialist society based on collective ownership and control of the means of production.

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For June Examination: 31st April, For December Examination: 30th October

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