Political Science and Other Social Sciences

Political Science and Other Social Sciences

As mentioned in the introductory article in this module, political science is the systematic study of the state and the workings of the political economy. The study of political science gives people the ability to influence and persuade the authorities to conform to broad developmental thrusts and to steer the direction in which the government is headed. Since political science is concerned with the study of the global political economy, it has links to other social sciences like history, sociology, philosophy, and psychology. It needs to be mentioned that political science is that branch of the social sciences that is concerned with the workings of the global political economy and hence, shares a symbiotic relationship with the other social sciences that study the other parts of the global political economy. We have chosen history, sociology, philosophy and psychology in this article as these are the disciplines that have a bearing on how political scientists go about their work.

History, Sociology, and Political Science

Political science is intimately linked to history as the patterns of the past provide clues to the future. There can be no better guide to understanding the present and to predict the future than by studying the events in the past and extrapolating them to the future. For instance, when political scientists try to predict the likely direction, which the global political economy takes, they would be relying on history to predict political behavior. Next, political science is closely intertwined with sociology as both branches attempt to study human behavior in groups. Whereas sociology studies the entire societies, political science is concerned with the political systems that are part of the larger society. The study of the interactions between the people and the state is something that both sociology and political science aim to do and hence, there is a symbiotic relationship between sociology and political science.

Philosophy, Psychology, and Political Science

The next aspect is to do with philosophy. Since political behavior and governance are studied in terms of political philosophy which deals with abstract notions of the role of the state and the relationship of people and the state with an emphasis on understanding the concepts of public welfare and larger social good, both political science and philosophy have common grounds in these aspects. The final social science discipline chosen is psychology and as this discipline studies human behavior in society, there are meeting points between political science and psychology as they both are concerned with the examination of why people in the larger political economy behave the way they do.

Final Thoughts

Finally, political science cannot be a standalone or isolated field as all branches of the social sciences purport to explain the larger questions concerning people and the state. Hence, there are symbiotic relationships between political science and other sub-disciplines of social sciences as they have common ground in their quest to understand how political systems work and how politics and governance play themselves out.


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Political Science