Politics is an academic field that studies the interactions of government and society at both the national and local level. Politics is the study of the social arrangements that result from government action and decision making. Politics is the collection of human actions that are motivated by self-interest, civic pride, political ideology, ethnic pride, national unity or territorial integrity, religious beliefs, and other motivators. The field of political science is also referred to as social science because it studies society and politics as a whole, not just individual actors or institutions.
Politics is a subject that has many different topics and sub-topics. One might argue that politics has four main areas: political theory, political institutions, constitutional law, and political practices. Theoretical work in political science ranges over a wide range of topics such as constitutional interpretation, property rights, and scientific policymaking. The political institutions area has many different areas of focus including constitutional legitimacy, representative government, economic policies, social policies, political parties and coalitions, international politics, national identity, and political systems. Constitutional law is the body of law that governs the administration of domestic and foreign affairs through the constitution established by the country’s government. Constitutional law is also the body of law that determines the legitimacy of particular political institutions and their rules of conduct.
One prominent branch of politics is party politics. Party politics refers to the interaction of politicians in the political arena. Politicians are generally elected for a specific term and then serve until their party drops enough votes to force a new election. Party politics is especially common in countries with a multiparty system of governance. In the United States, state and national politics also play a large role in shaping the makeup of parliamentarians.