Political Science Book Review Examples

Political Writing: A Guide to the Essentials
by Adam Garfinkle, David Brooks

Writing well, and persuasively, is not only a discipline that can be learned, it is one deeply rooted in the classical arts of rhetoric and polemic. This book introduces the essential skills, rules, and steps for producing effective political prose appropriate to many contexts, from the editorial, the op-ed, and the polemical essay to others both weighty and seemingly slight.

Introduction to Political Science
by Fred Van Geest

Introduction to Political Science: A Christian PerspectiveIVP Instructor Resources forthcoming.

The Relevance of Political Science
by Gerry Stoker, B. Guy Peters, Jon Pierre

What does political science tell us about important real-world problems and issues? And to what extent does and can political analysis contribute to solutions? This is the challenge addressed by leading political scientists in this original text which will be essential reading for students and scholars alike.

Writing a Research Paper in Political Science
by Lisa A. Baglione

In Writing a Research Paper in Political Science, author Lisa Baglione breaks down the research paper into its constituent parts and shows students precisely how to complete each component. The author provides encouragement at each stage and faces pitfalls head on, giving advice and examples so that students move through each task successfully. Students are shown how to craft the right research question, find good sources and properly summarize them, operationalize concepts, design good tests for their hypotheses, and present and analyze quantitative and qualitative data. Even writing an introduction, coming up with effective headings and titles, presenting a conclusion, and the important steps of editing and revising are covered. Practical summaries, recipes for success, worksheets, exercises, and a series of handy checklists make this a must-have supplement for any writing-intensive political science course.

In this Third Edition, updated sample research topics come from American government, gender studies, comparative politics, and international relations. And now, more extensive materials are available on the web, including checklists and worksheets that help students tackle each step, calendar ideas to help them complete their paper on time, and a glossary.


The Politics of Political Science
by Paulo Ravecca

In this thought-provoking book, Paulo Ravecca presents a series of interlocking studies on the politics of political science in the Americas.

Focusing mainly on the cases of Chile and Uruguay, Ravecca employs different strands of critical theory to challenge the mainstream narrative about the development of the discipline in the region, emphasizing its ideological aspects and demonstrating how the discipline itself has been shaped by power relations. Ravecca metaphorically charts the (non-linear) transit from “cold” to “warm” to “hot” intellectual temperatures to illustrate his—alternative—narrative. Beginning with a detailed quantitative study of three regional academic journals, moving to the analysis of the role of subjectivity (and political trauma) in academia and its discourse in relation to the dictatorships in Chile and Uruguay, and arriving finally at an intimate meditation on the experience of being a queer scholar in the Latin American academy of the 21st century, Ravecca guides his readers through differing explorations, languages, and methods.

The Politics of Political Science: Re-Writing Latin American Experiences offers an essential reflection on both the relationship between knowledges and politics and the political and ethical role of the scholar today, demonstrating how the study of the politics of knowledge deepens our understanding of the politics of our times.


A Novel Approach to Politics
by Douglas A. Van Belle

A Novel Approach to Politics turns conventional textbook wisdom on its head by using pop culture references to illustrate key concepts and cover recent political events. This is a textbook you will want to read. Adopters of previous editions from schools all over the country are thanking author Douglas A. Van Belle for some of their best student evaluations to date.

With this Fifth Edition, Douglas A. Van Belle brings the book fully up to date with recent events such as Trump’s executive orders on immigration, the 2016 elections in the US, current policy debates including recent court decisions that may affect gerrymandering, international happenings such as Brexit, and other assorted intergalactic matters. Van Belle adds a wealth of new and recent movies and books to the text, as he illustrates key concepts in political science through examples that captivate you. Employing a wide range of references from 1984 to Game of Thrones to House of Cards, students are given a solid foundation in institutions, ideology, and economics. To keep things grounded, the textbook nuts and bolts are still there to aid students, including chapter objectives, chapter summaries, bolded key terms, and discussion questions.


Thinking Like a Political Scientist
by Christopher Howard

Each year, tens of thousands of students who are interested in politics go through a rite of passage: they take a course in research methods. Many find the subject to be boring or confusing, and with good reason. Most of the standard books on research methods fail to highlight the most important concepts and questions. Instead, they brim with dry technical definitions and focus heavily on statistical analysis, slighting other valuable methods. This approach not only dulls potential enjoyment of the course, but prevents students from mastering the skills they need to engage more directly and meaningfully with a wide variety of research.

With wit and practical wisdom, Christopher Howard draws on more than a decade of experience teaching research methods to transform a typically dreary subject and teach budding political scientists the critical skills they need to read published research more effectively and produce better research of their own. The first part of the book is devoted to asking three fundamental questions in political science: What happened? Why? Who cares? In the second section, Howard demonstrates how to answer these questions by choosing an appropriate research design, selecting cases, and working with numbers and written documents as evidence. Drawing on examples from American and comparative politics, international relations, and public policy, Thinking Like a Political Scientist highlights the most common challenges that political scientists routinely face, and each chapter concludes with exercises so that students can practice dealing with those challenges.


The Political Science Student Writer’s Manual and Reader’s Guide
by Gregory M. Scott, Stephen M. Garrison

The Political Science Student Writer’s Manual and Reader’s Guide is a practical guide to research, reading, and writing in political science.

The Political Science Student Writer’s Manual and Reader’s Guide, Eighth Edition, is a set of instructions and exercises that sequentially develop citizenship, academic, and professional skills while providing students with knowledge about a wide range of political and governmental concepts, phenomena, and information sources. It begins by teaching beginning students to engage newspapers and other political media sources critically and analytically. It focuses on the crafts of writing and scholarship by providing the basics of grammar, style, formats and source citation, and then introduces students to a variety of rich information resources including the Congressional Record, Federal Register, and the Library of Congress. Students actively apply their knowledge and skills by corresponding with their representatives and commenting on pending government regulations. Part 1 concludes with campaign management, policy analysis, legislation assessment, and similar exercises that develop student skilled-observation proficiency. Part 2 prepares students to research, read, write, review, and critique political science scholarship. Finally, Part 3 teaches advanced students how to investigate public opinion; analyze domestic and international public policies; author amicus briefs; and participate in the universal community that deliberates the continuing rich tradition of political philosophy.


Empirical Research and Writing
by Leanne C. Powner

Students can easily misstep when they first begin to do research. Leanne C. Powner’s new title Empirical Research and Writing: A Student’s Practical Guide provides valuable advice and guidance on conducting and writing about empirical research. Chapter by chapter, students are guided through the key steps in the research process. Written in a lively and engaging manner and with a dose of humor, this practical text shows students exactly how to choose a research topic, conduct a literature review, make research design decisions, collect and analyze data, and then write up and present the results. The book’s approachable style and just-in-time information delivery make it a text students will want to read, and its wide-ranging and surprisingly sophisticated coverage will make it an important resource for their later coursework.

Writing in Political Science
by Danielle LaVaque-Manty, Mika LaVaque-Manty

Writing in Political Science: A Brief Guide applies the key concepts of rhetoric and composition–audience, purpose, genre, and credibility–to examples based in political science. It is part of a series of brief, discipline-specific writing guides from Oxford University Press designed for today’s writing-intensive college courses. The series is edited by Tom Deans (University of Connecticut) and Mya Poe (Northeastern University).


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