Free Shipping on orders over $25

Book Details

  • Hardcover
  • Bookstore's Wholesale Price: $90.00
  • January 2012
  • ISBN: 978-0-393-91207-4
  • 864 pages
  • Territory Rights: USA and Dependencies, Philippines and Canada.

American Government

Power and Purpose

Full Twelfth Edition (with policy chapters)


Theodore J. Lowi (Author, Cornell University), Benjamin Ginsberg (Author, The Johns Hopkins University), Kenneth A. Shepsle (Author, Harvard University), Stephen Ansolabehere (Author, Harvard University)


Always authoritative. More contemporary than ever.

The text that professors trust to get students thinking analytically about American government has been extensively revised by co-author Stephen Ansolabehere and updated with new "Analyzing the Evidence" sections written by top researchers.


Revised political behavior chapters

In the Eleventh Edition, Ansolabehere deeply revised the public opinion and media chapters. In this Twelfth Edition, he brings a contemporary perspective to the parties and interest groups chapters while also extensively updating the chapter on elections, which now includes an analysis of the 2010 midterm elections.

New “Analyzing the Evidence” infographics

Bold graphics show how data and research yield important insights into politics. This popular feature, which appears in every chapter, has been redesigned for greater visual impact and clearer presentation of the data. Eight new spreads by top researchers—in addition to nine updated spreads—get students thinking analytically about contemporary topics. New PowerPoints break the infographics into segments, optimized for lecture. New infographics include:
Measuring Ideologyon the Roberts Court, by Kevin Quinn (Berkeley) and Andrew Martin (Washington University)
Federalism and Health Care Reform, by Jenna Bednar (University of Michigan)
The Politics of Presidential Appointments, by David Lewis (Vanderbilt University)
Analyzing the Post-2010 Redistricting, by Steve Ansolabehere

A consistent and effective framework

Politics is messy, complex, and contentious. How do we make sense of what seems too large and impossible to explain? Throughout the text, the authors repeatedly draw on five fundamental principles of politics:

• All political behavior has a purpose.
• Institutions structure politics.
• All politics is collective action.
• Political outcomes are the products of individual preferences and institutional procedures.
• History matters.

    Full Edition Contents*

    (*Core Edition contents = Chapters 1-14 only)


    1. Five Principles of Politics

    2. Constructing a Government: The Founding and the Constitution

    3. Federalism and the Separation of Powers

    4. Civil Liberties

    5. Civil Rights


    6. Congress: The First Branch

    7. The Presidency as an Institution

    8. The Executive Branch: Bureaucracy in a Democracy

    9. The Federal Courts


    10. Public Opinion

    11. Elections

    12. Political Parties

    13. Groups and Interests

    14. The Media


    15. Economic Policy

    16. Social Policy

    17. Foreign Policy