If you are appearing in civil services examination conducted by UPSC, in this article, you will get complete syllabus of UPSC Mains for Political Science.


upsc mains political science syllabus

Here, in this post, you will find syllabus of  ‘Political Science’ which is one optional subject of UPSC Mains Examination. To appear in UPSC Civil Services Mains exam, you need to have complete awareness about  UPSC Mains Syllabus and exam pattern.  To get complete information, you can check given links.

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 UPSC MAINS POLITICAL SCIENCE SYLLABUS PAPER – I

Political Theory and Indian Politics:

Political Theory: meaning and approaches.

Theories of the State: Liberal, Neo-liberal, Pluralist, Marxist, Post-colonial, and feminist.

Justice: Conceptions of justice.Rawl’s theory of justice and its communitarian critiques.

Equality: Political, Social and economic; relationship between equality and freedom; Affirmative action.

Rights: Meaning and theories; different kinds of rights; concept of Human Rights.

Democracy: Classical theories and contemporary theories; different models of democracy – participatory, representative,  and deliberative.

Concept of power, ideology, hegemony, and legitimacy.

Political Ideologies: Liberalism, Marxism, Socialism, Fascism, Gandhism and Feminism.

Indian Political Thought: Dharmashastra, Sir Syed Ahmed Khan, Arthashastra and Buddhist traditions; Sri Aurobindo, M.N. Roy, M.K. Gandhi, B.R. Ambedkar.

Western Political Thought: Plato, Aristotle, Machiavelli, Locke, Hobbes, John S. Mill, Marx, Gramsci, and Hannah Arendt.

Indian Government and Politics:

Indian Nationalism:

(a) India’s Freedom Struggle: Political Strategies, Constitutionalism to mass Satyagraha, Civil Disobedience, Liberal and Non-cooperation; Peasant and workers’ movements, Militant and revolutionary movements.

(b) Perspectives on Indian National Movement: Liberal andMarxist; Radical humanist and Dalit.

Making of the Indian Constitution:

Legacies of the British rule; various social and political perspectives.

Salient Features of the Indian Constitution: The Preamble, Directive Principles; Fundamental Rights and Duties, Parliamentary System and Constitutional Amendment Procedures; Judicial Review and Basic Structure doctrine.

(a) Principal Organs of the Union Government:  role and actual working of thelegislature, Executive  and Supreme Court.

(b) Principal Organs of the State Government: role and actual working of the Legislature,  Executive, and High Courts.

Grassroots Democracy: Panchayati Raj and Municipal Government; Grass root movements , significance of 73rd and 74th Amendments;.

Statutory Institutions/Commissions: Election Commission, Finance Commission, Comptroller and Auditor General, , Union Public Service Commission, National Commission for Scheduled Tribes, National Commission for Scheduled Castes,  National Commission for Women; National Commission for Minorities ,National Human Rights Commission,  National Backward Classes Commission.

Federalism: Constitutional provisions related to; changing nature of state- center relations; integrationist tendencies and regional aspirations; inter-state disputes.

Planning and Economic Development : Gandhian and Nehruvian  perspectives; role of planning and public sector; Green Revolution, land reforms and agrarian relations; liberalization and its impact and economic reforms.

Caste, Religion and Ethnicity in Indian Politics.

Party System: National and regional political parties, social base and ideological bases of parties; patterns of coalition politics; trends in electoral behavior; Pressure groups, changing socio- economic profile of Legislators.

Social Movements: Women’s movements; Civil liberties and human rights movements; environmentalist movements.


UPSC MAINS POLITICAL SCIENCE SYLLABUS PAPER – 2


Don’t forget to read-IAS Preparation for Prelims and IAS Preparation for Mains


Comparative Politics and International Relations

Comparative Politics: Nature and  approaches;  political economy and political sociology, perspectives and limitations of the comparative method.

Study of State in comparative perspective: Characteristics and changing nature of the State in socialist and capitalist economies  and  advanced industrial and developing societies.

Politics of Participation and Representation :  Pressure groups, Political parties and social movements in advanced industrial and developing societies.

Globalization: Responses from different developing and developed  societies.

Approaches to the Study of International Relations: Idealist, Realist, Functionalist, Marxist  and Systems theory.

Key concepts in International Relations: National interest, Security and power; Transnational actors and collective security, Balance of power and deterrence; World capitalist economy and globalization.

Changing International Political Order:

(a) Rise of super powers; ideological and strategic Bipolarity, arms race and Cold War; nuclear threat;

(b) Non-aligned movement: Concept, Aims and achievements;

(c) Collapse of the Soviet Union; relevance of non-alignment in the contemporary world, Unipolarity and American hegemony.

Evolution of the International Economic System:

From Bretton woods to WTO; Socialist economies and the CMEA (Council for Mutual Economic Assistance); Globalization of the world economy, Third World demand for new international economic order.

United Nations:

Emergence, role and actual record: specialised agencies of  UN and their aims and functioning; a need for UN reforms.

Regionalization of World Politics: APEC, EU, ASEAN,  SAARC, NAFTA.

Contemporary Global Concerns: Democracy, environment, human rights, gender justice, terrorism, nuclear proliferation

India and the World:

Indian Foreign Policy: Determinants of foreign policy; continuity and change,  institutions of policy-making.

India’s Contribution to the Non- Alignment Movement:  Study of Different phases and current role.

India and South Asia:

(a) Regional Co-operation: SAARC – existence,past performance and future prospects.

(b) South Asia and concept of  Free Trade Area.

(c) India and its “Look East” policy.

(d) Impediments to regional co-operation: illegal cross-border migration; river water disputes; ethnic conflicts and insurgencies; border disputes.

India and the Global South: Relations with Latin America and Africa ; leadership role in the demand for WTO and NIEO negotiations.

India and the Global Centers of Power: EU, USA,  Japan, China and Russia.

India and the UN System: Its role in UN Peace-keeping; India’s demand for Permanent Seat in the Security Council.

India and the Nuclear Power Question: Changing perceptions and policy.

Recent developments in Indian Foreign policy: India and its position on the recent crisis in Iraq , Afghanistan, and West Asia, growing relations with Israel and US; vision of a new world order.


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