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978-0-520-20726-4 / 0520207262

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About the book:

How can we best understand the major debates and recent movements in contemporary empirical political theory? In this volume, the contributors, including four past presidents of the APSA and one past president of the IPSA, present their views of the central core, methodologies and development of empirical political science. Their disparate views of the unifying themes of the discipline reflect different theoretical orientations, from behavioralism to rational choice, cultural theory to postmodernism, and feminism to Marxism. Is there a human nature on which we can construct scientific theories of political life? What is the role of culture in shaping any such nature? How objective and value-free can political theories be? These are only a few of the issues the volume addresses. By assessing where we have traveled intellectually as a discipline and asking what remains of lasting significance in the various theoretical approaches that have engulfed the profession, Contemporary Empirical Political Theory provides an important evaluation of the current state of empirical political theory and a valuable guide to future developments in political science.

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