Political Science & International Relations Syllabus, UPSC Civil Services Mains Exam
UPSC Civil Services Mains Exam Optional Subject consists of 2 papers. Each paper is of 300 marks, making a total of 600 marks.
PAPER – I
Political Theory and Indian Politics:
1. Political Theory:
meaning and approaches.
2. Theories of the State:
Liberal, Neoliberal, Marxist, Pluralist, Post-colonial and feminist.
Conceptions of justice with special reference to Rawl’s theory of justice and its communitarian critiques.
4. Equality: Social, political and economic; relationship between equality and freedom; Affirmative action.
Meaning and theories; different kinds of rights; concept of Human Rights.
Classical and contemporary theories; different models of democracy – representative, participatory and deliberative.
Concept of power, hegemony, ideology and legitimacy.
8. Political Ideologies:
Liberalism, Socialism, Marxism, Fascism, Gandhism and Feminism.
9. Indian Political Thought :
Dharamshastra, Arthashastra and Buddhist traditions; Sir Syed Ahmed Khan, Sri Aurobindo, M.K. Gandhi, B.R. Ambedkar, M.N. Roy.
10. Western Political Thought:
Plato, Aristotle, Machiavelli, Hobbes, Locke, John S. Mill, Marx, Gramsci, Hannah Arendt.
Indian Government and Politics:
1. Indian Nationalism:
(a) Political Strategies of India’s Freedom Struggle:Constitutionalism to mass Satyagraha, Non-cooperation, Civil Disobedience; Militant and revolutionary movements, Peasant and workers’ movements.
(b) Perspectives on Indian National Movement: Liberal, Socialist and Marxist; Radical humanist and Dalit.
2. Making of the Indian Constitution:
Legacies of the British rule; different social and political perspectives.
3. Salient Features of the Indian Constitution:
The Preamble, Fundamental Rights and Duties, Directive Principles; Parliamentary System and Amendment Procedures; Judicial Review and Basic Structure doctrine.
(a) Principal Organs of the Union Government: Envisaged role and actual working of the Executive, Legislature and Supreme Court.
(b) Principal Organs of the State Government: Envisaged role and actual working of the Executive, Legislature and High Courts.
5. Grassroots Democracy:
Panchayati Raj and Municipal Government; significance of 73rd and 74th Amendments; Grassroot movements.
6. Statutory Institutions/Commissions:
Election Commission, Comptroller and Auditor General, Finance Commission, Union Public Service Commission, National Commission for Scheduled Castes, National Commission for Scheduled Tribes, National Commission for Women; National Human Rights Commission, National Commission for Minorities, National Backward Classes Commission.
Constitutional provisions; changing nature of centre-state relations; integrationist tendencies and regional aspirations; inter-state disputes.
8. Planning and Economic Development :
Nehruvian and Gandhian perspectives; role of planning and public sector; Green Revolution, land reforms and agrarian relations; liberalilzation and economic reforms.
Caste, Religion and Ethnicity in Indian Politics.
10. Party System:
National and regional political parties, ideological and social bases of parties; patterns of coalition politics; Pressure groups, trends in electoral behaviour; changing socio- economic profile of Legislators.
11. Social Movements:
Civil liberties and human rights movements; women’s movements; environmentalist movements.
PAPER – II
Comparative Politics and International Relations
Comparative Political Analysis and International Politics:
1. Comparative Politics:
Nature and major approaches; political economy and political sociology perspectives; limitations of the comparative method.
2. State in comparative perspective:
Characteristics and changing nature of the State in capitalist and socialist economies, and, advanced industrial and developing societies.
3. Politics of Representation and Participation:
Political parties, pressure groups and social movements in advanced industrial and developing societies.
Responses from developed and developing societies.
5. Approaches to the Study of International Relations:
Idealist, Realist, Marxist, Functionalist and Systems theory.
6. Key concepts in International Relations:
National interest, Security and power; Balance of power and deterrence; Transnational actors and collective security; World capitalist economy and globalisation.
7. Changing International Political Order:
(a) Rise of super powers; strategic and ideological Bipolarity, arms race and Cold War; nuclear threat;
(b) Non-aligned movement: Aims and achievements;
(c) Collapse of the Soviet Union; Unipolarity and American hegemony; relevance of non-alignment in the contemporary world.
8. Evolution of the International Economic System:
From Brettonwoods to WTO; Socialist economies and the CMEA (Council for Mutual Economic Assistance); Third World demand for new international economic order; Globalisation of the world economy.
9. United Nations:
Envisaged role and actual record; specialized UN agencies-aims and functioning; need for UN reforms.
10. Regionalisation of World Politics:
EU, ASEAN, APEC, SAARC, NAFTA.
11. Contemporary Global Concerns:
Democracy, human rights, environment, gender justice, terrorism, nuclear proliferation.
India and the World:
1. Indian Foreign Policy:
Determinants of foreign policy; institutions of policy-making; continuity and change.
2. India’s Contribution to the Non-Alignment Movement:
Different phases; current role.
3. India and South Asia:
(a) Regional Co-operation: SAARC – past performance and future prospects.
(b) South Asia as a Free Trade Area.
(c) India’s “Look East” policy.
(d) Impediments to regional co-operation: river water disputes; illegal cross-border migration; ethnic conflicts and insurgencies; border disputes.
4. India and the Global South:
Relations with Africa and Latin America; leadership role in the demand for NIEO and WTO negotiations.
5. India and the Global Centres of Power:
USA, EU, Japan, China and Russia.
6. India and the UN System:
Role in UN Peace-keeping; demand for Permanent Seat in the Security Council.
7. India and the Nuclear Question:
Changing perceptions and policy.
8. Recent developments in Indian Foreign policy:
India’s position on the recent crisis in Afghanistan, Iraq and West Asia, growing relations with US and Israel; vision of a new world order.