UPSC Optional Paper Syllabus for Political Science – Paper I (Political Theory and Indian Politics)
Political Science and International Relations syllabus majorly covers topics related to the Constitution of India, social justice, international organizations, the international economic system and trade, India’s foreign policy, and peacekeeping among others.
A. Political Theory and Thinkers
Meaning, Definition, and approaches
Theories of the state
Pluralist, Liberal, Neoliberal, Marxist, Post-colonial Feminist.
Concept of justice with reference to Rawl’s theory of justice
Relationship between freedom and equality and; Political, Social, and economic; Affirmative action.
Meaning and theories; the concept of Human Rights
different models of democracy – deliberative, participatory and representative, Contemporary and Classical theories
Concept of power
hegemony, Ideology legitimacy.
Marxism, Liberalism, Fascism, Gandhism, Feminism, Socialism.
Indian Political Thought
Dharamshastra, Arthashastra, and Buddhist traditions; Sri Aurobindo, B.R. Ambedkar, Sir Syed Ahmed Khan, M.K. Gandhi, M.N. Roy.
Western Political Thought
Plato, John S. Mill, Machiavelli, Aristotle, Locke, Hobbes, Gramsci Marx, Hannah Arendt.
UPSC IAS Mains 2020: Optional Subject Syllabus for Sociology
B. Indian Government and Politics
Political Strategies of India’s Freedom Struggle: Civil Disobedience, Non-cooperation; Constitutionalism to mass Satyagraha, Peasant and workers’ movements, Revolutionary movements.
Making of the Indian Constitution
Different political and social perspectives, Legacies of the British rule Salient Features of the Indian Constitution Fundamental Rights and Duties, Judicial Review and Basic Structure doctrine, The Preamble, Directive Principles, Parliamentary System, Amendment Procedures.
Principal Organs of the Union Government
Executive, Envisaged role and actual working of the Legislature, and Supreme Court.
Principal Organs of the State Government
Executive, Envisaged role and actual working of the Legislature, and High Courts.
Statutory Institutions/ Commissions
Election Commission, Comptroller, and Auditor General, Finance Commission, Union Public Service Commission, National Backward Classes Commission, National Commission for Scheduled Castes, National Commission for Scheduled Tribes, National Commission for Women; National Commission for Minorities.
Changing nature of center-state relations; Constitutional provisions; and regional aspirations; integrationist tendencies, inter-state disputes.
Planning and Economic Development
The role of planning and public sector; land reforms and agrarian relations; liberalization, Green Revolution, economic reforms.
National and regional political parties, Ideological and social bases of parties; trends in electoral behaviour; patterns of coalition politics; Pressure groups, changing the socio-economic profile of Legislators.
Civil liberties, women’s movements; environmentalist movements
UPSC Optional Paper Syllabus for Political Science – Paper I (Comparative Politics and International Relations)
A. Comparative Political Analysis and International Politics
Political economy, Nature and major approaches; limitations of the comparative method.
Responses from developing and developed societies. Approaches to the Study of International Relations Idealist, Functionalist, Realist, Marxist, and Systems theory.
Key concepts in International Relations
Security, World capitalist economy and globalization; Balance of power and deterrence; National interest, and power; Transnational actors, and collective security.
Changing International Political Order
The arms race and Cold War; Rise of superpowers; strategic and ideological Bipolarity, nuclear threat; Non-aligned movement: Achievements and Aims; 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; Globalisation of the world economy; Socialist economies and the CMEA (Council for Mutual Economic Assistance); Third World demand for new international economic order.
Envisaged role and actual record; Specialized UN agencies-aims and functioning; the need for UN reforms.
Regionalization of World Politics
ASEAN, SAARC, APEC, EU, NAFTA.
Contemporary Global Concerns
Human rights, Gender justice, nuclear proliferation, Democracy, environment, terrorism.
Indian Foreign Policy
Continuity and change: Institutions of policy-making, Determinants of foreign policy
India and South Asia
South Asia as a Free Trade Area Regional Co-operation: SAARC –past performance and future prospects Impediments to regional co-operation: ethnic conflicts and insurgencies; river water disputes; illegal cross-border migration; border disputes. India’s “Look East” policy
India and the Global South
Relations with Latin America and Africa, Leadership role in the demand for NIEO and WTO negotiations
India and the Global Centres of Power
USA, China, EU, Japan, and Russia.
India and the UN System
Role in United Nation Peace-keeping
India and the Nuclear Questions
Perceptions and Changing policy
Recent developments in Indian Foreign Policy
India’s position on the recent crisis in West Asia, Growing relations with US and Israel; Afghanistan and Iraq, the vision of new world order