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Book Details

  • Hardcover
  • Bookstore's Wholesale Price: $111.00
  • January 2013
  • ISBN: 978-0-393-91325-5
  • 880 pages
  • Territory Rights: Worldwide

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Visit the showcase site for American Politics Today

      American Politics Today

      Third Full Edition


      David T. Canon (Author, University of Wisconsin, Madison), William T. Bianco (Author, Indiana University, Bloomington)


      Politics is about conflict and compromise.

      American Politics Today helps students understand the debates and controversies that they encounter in the news by emphasizing conflict and compromise as natural parts of politics. New book features—including highly visual “How It Works” infographics—show how the American political process resolves conflicts.


      An emphasis on conflict and compromise

      An emphasis on conflict and compromise offers a dynamic way to get students thinking more deeply about American politics. Three key ideas—beginning with the idea that politics is conflictual—run through the book:
      • Politics is conflictual.
      • Political process matters.
      • Politics is everywhere.

      All new Conflict and Compromise chapter openers use recent stories “ripped from the headlines” to explore how conflict and compromise have shaped nearly all aspects of American politics. “You Decide” boxes present a controversial issue and encourage students to consider the possible trade-offs involved in proposed solutions.

      Shows that politics is explainable

      Bianco and Canon address student cynicism by showing them how politics works: how the political process resolves (or fails to resolve) conflict, how the Founders intended for it to work, and how it works in action today. New “How It Works” infographics complement the chapter-opening stories, depicting the processes that underlie the conflicts and compromises we see in American politics. Critical-thinking questions ask students to consider the implications of the process and how it affects the outcome. 

      Goal-oriented pedagogy

      Chapter Objectives identify important learning objectives at the beginning of the chapter and then recur at the start of the relevant sections throughout the chapter to create a more active reading experience. End-of-chapter review sections organized around Chapter Objectives include section summaries, practice quiz questions, key terms, and critical thinking questions, as well as information about related online resources. Nuts and Bolts boxes provide students with brief summaries, in the form of bulleted lists or tables, of important basic information they will want to review. 

      In-text and online features encourage analytical and critical thinking

      “What Do Political Scientists Do?” boxes in the text—and accompanying videos on StudySpace, the free student website—explain in an engaging, journalistic style how political scientists identify research topics and conduct their studies, and what makes this research and analysis important to the lives of ordinary people. “In Comparison” boxes examine how American political institutions and processes differ from those in other countries, shedding light on how America’s distinctive political processes matter. “You Decide” boxes challenge students to think critically and analytically about controversial issues. Online, further critical-thinking activities build off the book’s key themes and ask students to apply what they’ve learned to outside, web-based resources. 

        Full Edition Contents:

        Chapter 1: Understanding American Politics
        Chapter 2: The Constitution and the Founding
        Chapter 3: Federalism
        Chapter 4: Civil Liberties

        Chapter 5: Public Opinion
        Chapter 6: The Media
        Chapter 7: Political Parties
        Chapter 8: Elections
        Chapter 9: Interest Groups

        Chapter 10: Congress
        Chapter 11: The Presidency
        Chapter 12: The Bureaucracy
        Chapter 13: The Courts

        Chapter 14: Civil Rights
        Chapter 15: Economic Policy
        Chapter 16: Social Policy
        Chapter 17: Foreign Policy

        The Declaration of Independence
        The Articles of Confederation
        The Constitution of the United States of America
        Amendments to the Constitution
        The Federalist Papers, Nos. 10, 51, and 78
        Presidents and Vice Presidents