American Government: The Essentials: Institutions and Policies, 12th Edition

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9780495802822: American Government: The Essentials: Institutions and Policies, 12th Edition
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Acclaimed for the scholarship of its prominent authors and the clarity of its narrative, AMERICAN GOVERNMENT: THE ESSENTIALS preserves the structure of the main text but replaces the policy chapters with one brief chapter on the policymaking process while maintaining focus on three fundamental topics: the institutions of American government; the historical development of governmental procedures, actors, and policies; and who governs in the United States and to what ends. Student involvement in the material is bolstered by proven pedagogical features such as chapter outlines, Who Governs? and To What Ends? learning objective questions framing each chapter and How Things Work boxes that summarize important facts. The significantly enhanced media package with new online tools makes the learning experience engaging and accessible.

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About the Author:

James Q. Wilson most recently taught at Boston College and Pepperdine University. He was Professor Emeritus of Management and Public Administration at UCLA and was previously Shattuck Professor of Government at Harvard University. He wrote more than a dozen books on the subjects of public policy, bureaucracy, and political philosophy. He was president of the American Political Science Association (APSA), and he is the only political scientist to win three of the four lifetime achievement awards presented by the APSA. He received the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation's highest civilian award, in 2003. Professor Wilson passed away in March of 2012 after battling cancer. His work helped shape the field of political science in the United States. His many years of service to his American Government book remain evident on every page and will continue for many editions to come.

Review:

"Whether it is the student who has come to believe that politics has always been about the status quo or the student who has given up because average citizens cannot produce real change (a very common bias in my experience), this book finds ways to present a more nuanced view of American politics and show them that there is more to learn about the political landscape... you then have a very good opportunity to seize their attention and get them interested."

"I have examined over 15 American Government textbooks... and I find that none of them come close to matching this textbook in terms of approach, clarity, content, pedagogy, and ancillary materials.... [Wilson and DiIulio's] work in the public sector over the past years enhances their impressive academic credentials. The fact that they have worked for both Republicans and Democrats and the evenhanded manner with which they have covered the major topics in the text allays any reservations that this text doesn't give every side of an issue fair treatment.... I stand in awe of how Wilson and DiIulio are able to package so much solid information in such few pages.... This is as solid and intellectually honest a textbook as one could hope for. It should be the standard by which all others are measured. The emphasis on students using their critical thinking skills to reach conclusions on issues of the day provides a firm foundation.... I think that this is the finest American Government textbook available today. The authors combine excellent scholarship, academic rigor, practical examples, and insight that is an invaluable aid to any student trying to understand their government."

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