The American Political Pattern: Stability and Change, 1932-2016 - Studies in Government and Public Policy (Hardback)Byron E. Shafer (author)
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Shafer divides the modern world into four distinct periods: the High New Deal (1932-1938), the Late New Deal (1939-1968), the Era of Divided Government (1969-1992), and the Era of Partisan Volatility (1993-2016). Each period is characterized by a different arrangement of the same key factors: party balance, ideological polarization, issue conflict, and the policy-making process that goes with them.
The American Political Pattern shows how these factors are in turn shaped by permanent aspects of the US Constitution, most especially the separation of powers and federalism, while their alignment is simultaneously influenced by the external demands for governmental action that arise in each period, including those derived from economic currents, major wars, and social movements. Analyzing these periods, Shafer sets the terms for understanding the structure and dynamics of politics in our own turbulent time. Placing the current political world in its historical and evolutionary framework, while illuminating major influences on American politics over time, his book explains where this modern world came from, why it endures, and how it might change yet again.
Publisher: University Press of Kansas
Number of pages: 312
Weight: 544 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 23 mm
"Understanding the broad historical sweep of changing political party bases and the connection to policy enactments in Congress is a very demanding task. Too often scholars focus on just one of these or get bogged down in detail and history gets lost. Byron Shafer has drawn on his remarkable breadth of knowledge and managed to produce an engaging analysis of shifting party concerns, evolving factional party fights, and how these affected voting on policy legislation. For those who want a wide-ranging and enlightening political history, this is an outstanding book. Books like this come along far too infrequently. I highly recommend it." --Jeffrey M. Stonecash, author of Party Pursuits and the Presidential-House Election Connection, 1900-2008
"This is a masterful analysis by a distinguished scholar of American politics. Focusing on the interplay between party balance, ideological polarization, and central issue domains across four eras of American politics since the Great Depression, Shafer presents a vivid account of dynamic political transformations. For the many political observers who bemoan today's bitter partisan and policy conflicts, Shafer's book is a bracing reminder that the current era, like its predecessors, will pass away."--Bruce Miroff, author of Presidents on Political Ground: Leaders in Action and What They Face
"I know of no other book on political partisanship that so deftly combines electoral analysis, institutional politics and substantive public policy debate."--Gareth Davies, author of See Government Grow: Education Politics from Johnson to Reagan
"Shafer has produced an ambitious book that helps explain political dynamics across a wide swath of American history."--Political Science Quarterly
"Shafer's enterprise is truly grand and will undoubtedly raise numerous debates in the years to come."--Perspectives on Politics
"This complex and illuminating study merits the attention of both historians and public policy analysts."--Journal of American History
"Shafer aims to provide a means to understand the whole of American politics since the New Deal, and in this he succeeds. Highly recommended"--Choice
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