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The substantially revised and updated new fifth edition of this comprehensive text shows the broad social bases of politics and identifies how politics and actions by government can influence the fate of nations and their citizens. The text provides insight into recent political sociological theories and helps students make sense of the many major social and political changes taking place in the world. With a focus on the economy and politics, states and societies, civil society and politics, basic forms of political rule, power and equality in modern America, political parties, and citizen participation, this text is the perfect foundation for undergraduate courses in political sociology.