Social Political Terms
Card Set Information
Social Political Terms
Anarchy: (from the Greek= no rule) is a society
without government and/or law. Without institutions such as an organized
church, school, courts, police etc. It is a belief that all government is bad
because it exploits. Anarchists can be either individualists or collectivists.
Individualists believe that societies can emerge spontaneously and be maintained
via voluntary exchange between consenting individuals. Collectivists believe
that collectively owning and managing enterprises could be coordinated in a voluntary
manner. The political naivety of anarchists has often taken the form of
terrorist (to incite or instill terror in others) action against state
is a government ruled by a
privileged (often noble class) group of people determined by wealth or birth,
usually called nobles and power is inherited or hereditary.
(literally “rule by oneself”)
a system of government in which unlimited power is formally vested in one
person; a monarch ruling without restriction is often referred to as an
absolute monarch, eg. Czar Nicholas ii
A belief that the private
ownership of land, factories, banks, etc. should be replaced by the public
ownership of all
(from the Greek= rule by the
o a government with supreme power vested in the
people and exercised by them or their elected agents/representatives.
Government “of the people, by the people for the people”- Abraham Lincoln.
o A form of government where the majority rules
while respecting minority rights. This protects against majority tyranny, a
form of dictatorship. Minimally requires universal suffrage and competitive
: Where every citizen
ahs the opportunity to participate in the discussion public issues and the
making of all public decisions
: is where citizens
elect who they wish to represent them and their wishes
(from the Greek meaning “head
of the family” and “master of slaves”) is government by a ruler who uses
unlimited absolute authority to achieve his goals. Often used cruel, unjust and
illegal methods such as secret police, torture and arbitrary arrest. Despotism
is largely and archaic concept that has been supplanted by totalitarianism and
Divine Right of Kings
Right of Kings
: concept in
which monarchs were chosen by God and as such one could not speak out against
the authority or right of the king (or Queen) to rule. Such defiance would be
tantamount to speaking out against God- a blasphemous act that ensures an
eternity in purgatory for those who spoke out.
a long sequence of rulers from
the same family, e.g. Queen Elizabeth II, the House of Windsor, or the Chinese
a totalitarian political system with the goals of the nation
more important than individual goals. It is right wing authoritarian regime. It
is a system of government in which the executive power (the dictator) has
control over the legislative power (the parliament). It is nationalism gone
Monarchy: (From the Greek- rule of one alone) is a
government in which power is vested in a king or emperor who can pass power on
to his heirs, e.g. Monaco, Saudi Arabia.
Nationalism: a belief or doctrine in which people feel a
sense of belonging to something greater than themselves. This belonging may be
based upon one or several of the following characteristics
religious, ethnic, cultural, linguistic or social.
Nationalism (political, ethnic, civic)
(political) a feeling of
devotion to national interests, national unity; independence, sovereignty. With
respect to self-determination, people of a common heritage (language, religion,
culture, history) wish to form their own country. It is enthusiasm for the
“right and might” of a nation. The love for or pride one takes in one’s own
country is known as patriotism.
(Ethnic) shares a common
culture, history, ancestral descent.
(civic) assumes that these
people live together in a territory and are citizens of the country/state.
a government in which a few
people such as a dominant clan, group or clique have power. Powerful minority
controls majority, e.g. South Africa Apartheid; Military Junta Myanmar.
Plutocracy: (Greek: “Ploutos” meaning wealth) a government
in which the wealthy class rules.
Republic: a state without a monarchy. The people are
represented by elected individuals. Political sovereignty rests with the
citizens of the state, e.g. USA and France.
Theocracy: a system of government by people who claim a
divine right to rule, religious principals form the basis of law and rule. Governments
are run by priests or religious leaders in the name of their God, e.g. Vatican,
Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan.
centralized government with
absolute control by one political party over the population. “Total powers”
attempt to deal with a “total range” or every day life, e.g. communist,
Ultranationalism: The feeling or belief that countries posses
when they attempt to extend their influence beyond their own sovereign borders.
This is often disguised as an aggressive attempt to “defend” their own borders.
Ultranationalism is often referred to as an extreme form or patriotism. It is
in essence nationalism gone crazy!