After reading this chapter, you should be able to do the following:
- Understand the nature of politics, government, and citizenship.
- Differentiate among the types of democracies that exist in the world and identify the qualities that make a government truly democratic.
- Examine the functions of government as well as some of the challenges and controversies that affect its ability to perform each function effectively.
- Identify the four basic American values and describe how these values help to define the character of American politics.
- Explore the primary political ideologies that have helped to inform contemporary political discourse in the United States.
- Understand how comparison and historical analysis can deepen our understanding of American politics.