The world today is experiencing a myriad of political and social issues which cut across different spheres of the society. Therefore, political scientists have tried to come up and explain the causes of such events and provide solutions through the use of tools and techniques made available by political analysis. The changing dynamics in politics and the society at large has forced political analysts to come up with more suitable means of analyzing political issues, which led to the contemporary concept of political analysis. Political analysis has been of major help in the 21st century in understanding political issues (Sayer 1992,p.78).
Political analysis refers to the methods, approaches, and processes in political science which seek to give explanations for the occurrence of political events, when and how they occur and finally the means necessary to control such events (Burawoy 1989, p.789). According to Osaghae (1988), there are three goals of political analysis and they include identification of what is critical in politics that is the things and occurrences that determine or influence the results of events. Secondly, to know what is valuable. Political analysis enables us to identify the difference made by each political outcome both collectively and individually and thirdly, to know and identify what is real by systematically subjecting our guesses popular brief, impressions, and rumors to planned verification.
Contemporary political analysis
Contemporary political analysis refers to strategies, processes, and approaches that guide the political scientists in studying political phenomena (Blakely 2016, p. 14). Contemporary political analysis requires the adoption of new tools, concepts, and methods in dissecting political phenomenon in order to explain how, when and why an event occurred and how a political analyst can predict and control such political events.
Tools of contemporary political analysis
An approach to political inquiry refers to general strategies involved in the study of political phenomena (Isaak, 1985, p.185). They help in representing sets of assumptions that for the structure of political scientists’ research. They provide analysts with organizing concepts and assumptions that orient and coordinate empirical data from a myriad of sources. A list of all observations made by an individual in a day becomes useless unless they are selected and organized according to a set of assumptions necessary for shaping research in political science. Such tools help in opening the minds of political scientists mind to new ideas and concepts, theory and hypothesis (Eliasoph 2017, p.109)
A model is a theoretical construct, which represents political processes by sets of variables, quantitative and logical relationships between them (Dahl and Stinebrickner 200, p. 139). Models can be considered to be simplified frameworks that are designed to demonstrate complex processes using mathematical techniques. In political analysis, models are representations of phenomena of the real world that are created to ease the understanding of its workings.
Conceptual frameworks act as maps which give coherence to empirical inquiry. In political analysis, they take different forms depending on the research problem (Isaak 1985,p.144).
Importance of political analysis
v Helps in identification and analysis of political issues which impacts on a political system by the use of various tools of analysis.
v Political analysis adopts new methods, concepts, and tools in understanding political phenomena in explaining how, why and when political events occur and provide feasible solutions.
v Helps political scientists control political events by easily predicting their occurrences.
v The political analysis provides new methods and concepts for tackling contemporary political issues.
v The political analysis also helps in the understanding of different approaches to the study of political science and politics.
v Also through analysis great understanding of different political theories can be achieved.
Politics being an art of worldly transformation, it requires subjects that are capable of conceiving the possibility of worldly transformation. Hence, a subject that can see the intolerable that is presently imagined while demanding the impossible while creating a new one. Political analysts affirm and follow paths opened up by visions of other worlds (Walsh 2012, p.19). They also affirm the existence of other worlds. A subject which affirms the reality of the existence of different worlds, their antagonisms, as well as tangibility and reachability, so to say. It’s diminishment owes everything, not to the realities of a world which demand an evacuation of the political, but to the overwrought influence of liberalism over our own self-understandings of the limits of this world, its planetary boundaries, the weight of finitude, and the dangers which liberalism believes, and has preached for some time, that the imagination poses to a species equipped more than any other to transcend each and every boundary, each and every limit, and lose all sense of its own finitude and that of the world itself; the human. In this sense, a diagnosis of the contemporary degradations of political subjectivity has to remain an argument with the legacies of Immanuel Kant (Easton 1979, p.98)
The Kantian Enlightenment gave license to human beings to speculate on the possibility of other worlds but always with the insistence that this world, as it is supposedly known, is the only world that can be. The possibility of another world is thinkable only within this world, Kant said, and thus the possible has to always be suborned to the actual (Easton 1979, p.89). The corollary of the possibility of conceiving another world is the impossibility of moving beyond this world; the world, as it is known and said to be. In that sense, it was and still is a powerful and demeaning discourse on limits, one which forces individuals to accept a sense of the limits of this world as an imperious necessity without which they cannot think or act or indeed, imagine (Hay 2002, p.178)
The importance of political analysis in understanding the contemporary political issues in the society cannot be ignored. Through comparing the contemporary and traditional political analysis, the latter has proven its worth in tackling political issues that range from democracy, government terrorism, society and much more.
Blakely, Jason. 2016. 'Is political science this year's election casualty?' The Atlantic November 14.
Burawoy, M., 1989. Two methods in search of science. Theory and Society, 18(6), pp.759-805.
Dahl, R.A. and Stinebrickner, B., 2002. Modern political analysis. Pearson College Division.
Easton, D., 1979. A framework for political analysis. University of Chicago Press.
Eliasoph, N., 2017. Recognition of Rural Pride and Poverty: Better Late than Never!. Political Communication, 34(1), pp.138-141.
Isaak, A.C., 1985. Scope and methods of political science: An introduction to the methodology of political inquiry. Dorsey Press.
Sayer, A., 1992. Method in social science: a realist approach 2nd edn Routledge. New York.
Walsh, K.C., 2012. Putting inequality in its place: Rural consciousness and the power of perspective. American Political Science Review, 106(3), pp.517-532.