Political Science Syllabus for Main Examination
Aspirants can find the syllabus of Political Science and International Relations Paper for UPSC mains examination here. It is divided into several sections. Each section is important for their success in this exam. Students are advised to thoroughly read the Political Science and International Relations Paper syllabus and plan the preparation accordingly.
UPSC Political Science Syllabus PDF [Download]
Political Theory and Indian Politics
1.Political theory meaning and approaches
2.Theories of the state:
Liberal, Neoliberal, Marxist, Pluralist, Post-colonial and
Conceptions of justice with special reference to Rawl’s theory of justice and its communitarian critiques.
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
7.Concept of power, hegemony, ideology and legitimacy.
Liberalism, Socialism, Marxism, Fascism, Gandhism and Feminism.
9.Indian Political Thought:
Dharamshastra, Arthashastra and Buddhist traditions ; Sir Syed Ahmed Khan, S r i 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
- Political Strategies of India’s Freedom struggle : constitutionalism to mass Satyagraha, Non-cooperation, Civil Disobedience ; militant and revolutionary movements, Peasant and workers’ movements.
- Perspectives on Indian National Movement: Liberal, Socialist and Marxist; Radical humanist and Dalit.
Making of the Indian Constitution: Legacies of the British rule; different social and
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.
- Principal Organs of the Union Government: Envisaged role and actual working of the Executive, Legislature and Supreme Court.
- Principal Organs of the State Government: Envisaged role and actual working of the Executive, Legislature and High Courts.
Grassroots Democracy: Panchayati Raj
and Municipal Government; significance
of 73rd and 74th Amendments; Grassroot
Statutory Inst i tut ions/Commissions:
Election Commission, Comptroller and
Auditor General, Finance Commission,
Union Public Service Commission, National Commission for Scheduled Castes,
National Comission for scheduled Tribes, National Commission for Women;
National Human Rights Commission, National Commission for Minorities, National
Backward Classes Commission.
Federalism: Constitutional provisions;
changing nature of centre-state relations;
integrationist tendencies and regional aspirations; inter-state disputes.
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
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.
Social Movements: Civil liberties and
human rights movements; women's movements; environmentalist movements
Comparative Politics and International Relations
Comparative Politics: Nature and major
approaches; political economy and political sociology perspectives; limitations of
the comparative method.
State in comparative perspective: Characteristics and changing nature of the State
in capitalist and socialist economies, and,
advanced industrial and developing societies.
Politics of Representation and Participation: Political parties, pressure groups
and social movements in advanced industrial and developing societies.
Globalisation: Responses from developed and developing societies.
Approaches to the Study of International
Relations: Idealist, Realist, Marxist, Functionalist and Systems theory.
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.
Changing International Political Order:
- Rise of super powers; strategic and ideological Bipolarity, arms race and Cold War; nuclear threat;
- Non-al igned movement : Aims and
- Collapse of the Soviet Union; Unipolarity and American hegemony; relevance of non-alignment in the contemporary world.
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
United Nations: Envisaged role and actual record; specialized UN agencies-aims
and functioning; need for UN reforms.
Regionalisation of World Politics: EU,
ASEAN, APEC, SAARC, NAFTA.
Contemporary Global Concerns: Democracy, human rights, environment, gender justice, terrorism, nuclear proliferation.
India and the World:
Indian Foreign Policy: Determinants of
foreign policy; institutions of policy-making; continuity and change.
India's Contribution to the Non-Alignment
Movement: Different phases; current role
India and South Asia:
- Regional Co-operation: SAARC â€“ past
performance and future prospects.
- South Asia as a Free Trade Area.
- India's "Look East" policy.
- Impediments to regional co-operation:
river water disputes; illegal cross-border
migration; ethnic conflicts and insurgencies; border disputes.
India and the Global South: Relations
with Africa and Latin America; leadership
role in the demand for NIEO and WTO negotiations.
India and the Global Centres of Power:
USA, EU, Japan, China and Russia.
India and the UN System: Role in UN
Peace-keeping; demand for Permanent
Seat in the Security Council.
India and the Nuclear Question: Changing perceptions and policy.
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.