Diverging Pathways: The Peculiar and Problematic Gap between Comparative Politics and American Political Development

34 Pages Posted: 18 Dec 2013

Date Written: February 1, 2013

Abstract

This paper examines the diverging pathways of the fields of comparative politics and American Political development and explores areas of potential dialogue between them. Since the 1980s, the two subfields have become increasingly isolated from each other, reflecting the specialization trend in political science, growing emphasis in comparative politics on large-N cross-national research, a gap between the two fields over the merits of studying of political development, and the larger divide between the study of comparative and American politics. I argue that two areas in which comparative politics and APD have had extensive dialogue – qualitative methodology and the study of the welfare state – show there is much to be gained from greater linkages between the two sub-fields. There is no reason why fruitful dialogue cannot take place in other areas, particularly in the study of state-building, democratization, and identity.

Keywords: American political development, comparative politics, history of political science

Suggested Citation

Morgan, Kimberly J., Diverging Pathways: The Peculiar and Problematic Gap between Comparative Politics and American Political Development (February 1, 2013). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2369014 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2369014

Kimberly J. Morgan (Contact Author)

George Washington University ( email )

2121 I Street NW
Washington, DC 20052
United States

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