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Politics in Time: History, Institutions, and Social Analysis by [Pierson, Paul]
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Maneuvering masterfully across diverse literatures and drawing on an extraordinary range of empirical cases, Pierson identifies key mechanisms that give meaning and precision to the often invoked but abstract claim that history matters. Through analysis and illustration, he provides new insights into exactly how, when, and why this is true. This is an enormously important and agenda-setting work." - Kathleen Thelen, Northwestern University; "Politics in Time is a splendid book that will shape debates in political science and beyond for many years to come. It represents the most systematic and thorough statement on theorizing temporal processes in the social sciences ever written. Pierson sets new agendas by challenging researchers to take time seriously, especially those who work in analytic traditions that traditionally have been relatively atemporal." - James Mahoney, Brown University, author of The Legacies of Liberalism"

From the Inside Flap

"Every once in a long while a book comes along that shifts the debate entirely by altering the vantage point from which we approach the study of politics. This is such a book. Maneuvering masterfully across diverse literatures and drawing on an extraordinary range of empirical cases, Pierson identifies key mechanisms that give meaning and precision to the abstract claim that history matters. Through analysis and illustration, he provides new insights into exactly how, when, and why this is true. This is an enormously important and agenda-setting work."--Kathleen Thelen, Northwestern University

"Paul Pierson is a leading voice in new social science debates on temporality and path dependence. He has now taken a major step forward by unifying his arguments in an integrated statement. This book will be indispensable for scholars across several disciplines who are concerned with comparative-historical analysis, innovative perspectives on causal assessment, and integrative approaches that bridge qualitative and quantitative methods."---David Collier, University of California, Berkeley

"Politics in Time is a splendid book that will shape debates in political science and beyond for many years to come. It represents the most systematic and thorough statement on theorizing temporal processes in the social sciences ever written. Pierson sets new agendas by challenging researchers to take time seriously, especially those who work in analytic traditions that traditionally have been relatively atemporal."--James Mahoney, Brown University, author of The Legacies of Liberalism


Product Details

  • File Size: 1533 KB
  • Print Length: 216 pages
  • Publisher: Princeton University Press (September 19, 2011)
  • Publication Date: September 19, 2011
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005KLQWFQ
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #522,985 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Paul Pierson is one of the premier authorities on path dependence - definitely my favorite on the use of the concept in historical studies. Over the past few years, I have read excerpts from this book along with articles written by Pierson - not only is his academic writing extremely readable but he is also one of those rare scientific authors who stimulates the reader's thinking about his/her own research in new, diverse ways. I am thrilled to have this book in my library - my only regret is that I didn't purchase it sooner!
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Format: Paperback
Pierson's "Politics in Time" is one of the stronger cases for qualitative historical analysis. Much of the book focuses on the role of path dependence in political institutions and provides a strong case that we should pay attention.

However, the book is both too short and too long. I think Pierson's famous 1999 APSR article raises the most important issues covered in this book. Obviously, the book goes into greater depth, but much of it is repetitive.

Second, Pierson's discussion of methodology remains abstract. He provides very few actual examples of how one would use historical institutionalism in practice, which I think could have helped solidify his case even more. The book could have benefitted from an extended case illustration.

Overall, this is a classic and a great book, but be aware of the APSR article as another option if you just want an introduction to Pierson's arguments.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a required read for me in the doctoral program that I am in. I buy tons of books. Price and timely delivery are my two big needs. This selection had both covered. Thanks
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