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Higher Education

Cengage Advantage Books: Analyzing Politics, 6th Edition

  • Ellen Grigsby
  • ISBN-10: 1285465598
  • ISBN-13: 9781285465593
  • 384 Pages | Paperback
  • Previous Editions: 2012, 2009, 2005
  • COPYRIGHT: 2015 Published
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About the Product

Brief, accessible, and sophisticated, ANALYZING POLITICS, Sixth Edition, presents a clear outline of the discipline of political science and helps students understand the practical and immediate uses of applying analytical approaches to the study of politics. This text is notable for its early coverage of methods and theory and the use of a case study approach—introduced and used to acquire in-depth information about a particular subject while also pointing to its limitations. While the text covers fundamental concepts with contemporary, political examples, discussions of feminism and environmentalism offer a distinct departure from other texts and a unique opportunity to professors and students of political science. The Sixth Edition incorporates a new theme: It introduces the reader to some ways in which political science evaluates and seeks to unravel some of the complexities of 21st century politics. Because politics is rarely straightforward, students of political science need to be prepared for surprises, surprises so multilayered that they can be conceptualized as puzzles or riddles. The new edition confronts these complexities directly and brings them into every chapter of the book.


  • All boxes throughout the book are organized into Concept Summary and Concept in Depth categories to enhance the book's pedagogical orientation. Instructors and students can use the Concept Summary boxes for reference and review, and move on to the Concept in Depth boxes for further study.

  • The text features integrated coverage of other cultures. For example, Chapter 4, "Political Theory: Examining the Ethical Foundations of Politics," covers the Islamic Taliban movement in Afghanistan, while Chapter 8, "Comparative Politics I: Democracy and Non-Democracy," offers information on China.

  • Ethical discussions take place throughout the book. The author does not offer easy answers but rather presents the issues in such a way that students must think carefully and critically about them.

  • Study questions at the end of each chapter are a unique strength of this book. More extensive than those found in other texts, the questions start by asking students to articulate key concepts in their own words, then asks them to consider the various implications of those ideas, and finally asks them to make connections between those ideas, current events, and their own lives.

  • Sophisticated concepts are introduced in an accessible and non-threatening manner. The author explicitly connects concepts to real life so that students fully understand the complex topics presented and see how political decision-making shapes their own lives.


"[The three most important factors that led me to select this text were] "1) accessibility/readability 2) coverage of topics 3) engaging in style - I like the examples used to 'hook' students' interest."-Jody Neathery-Castro, University of Nebraska-Omaha
— Jody Neathery-Castro

About the Author

Ellen Grigsby

Ellen Grigsby (Ph. D., University of North Carolina, 1987) has been a faculty member in the Department of Political Science at the University of New Mexico since 1991. She teaches a broad range of political science classes, including classes in political theory and applied internships.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction.
2. Political Science and Scientific Methods in Studying Politics.
3. Key Concepts in Political Science.
4. Political Theory: Examining the Ethical Foundations of Politics.
5. Political Ideologies I: Liberalism, Conservatism, and Socialism.
6. Political Ideologies II: Fascism.
7. Political Ideologies III: Feminism, Environmentalism, and Postmodernism.
8. Comparative Politics I: Democracy and Non-democracy.
9. Comparative Politics II: Interest Groups, Political Parties, Elections, and Media.
10. Comparative Politics III: Governing Democracies: Executives, Legislatures, and Judiciaries.
11. International Relations I: Analyzing Recent and Contemporary Events in International Politics.
12. International Relations II: Contemporary Issues.

New to this edition

  • The new theme-how political science can be used to unravel complexities of 21st century politics—is carried out pedagogically in each chapter, serving as an explicit intellectual framework.
  • Each chapter now begins with a contemporary puzzle and photo that relates to the chapter's topic and poses questions that will be examined throughout the chapter.
  • These included puzzles are: the discrepancy between what people have the potential to know regarding political issues and what they do, in fact, know (Chapter 1); Senator Marco Rubio's 2012 response to a question about the earth's age (Chapter 2); Project Prevention, a controversial California organization that pays people to get sterilized (Chapter 3); the use of drones (Chapter 4); the disagreement surrounding President Obama's ideological identity (Chapter 5); Chancellor Merkel's statement about Germany's special and perpetual obligation to make ever present knowledge of the Holocaust while taking measures to ensure the absence of Nazism itself (Chapter 6); climate displacement and its gender dimensions (Chapter 7); competing voices of the Arab Spring (Chapter 8) and the Republican Party's Growth and Opportunity Project about how they can win in 2016 (Chapter 9).
  • Puzzle icons appear in the margin within the chapter to identify concepts or details that are especially relevant to the puzzle as well as key evidence to use in analyzing within the larger context of the chapter's themes.
  • "Analyzing the Puzzle of " sections at the end of each chapter address the questions posed at the start.


All supplements have been updated in coordination with the Main title.
Please see Main title page for new to this edition information.

Instructor Supplements

Online Instructor's Manual with Test Bank  (ISBN-10: 1285781422 | ISBN-13: 9781285781426)

A revised Instructor's Manual and Test Bank offers suggestions for class discussions, writing assignments, Internet and research projects, and exam questions to make course preparation easier. The instructor's manual and test bank have been updated with new material to reflect changes in the new edition.