UPSC Civil Services Mains Exam Optional Subject consists of 2 papers. Each paper is of 250 marks, making a total of 500 marks.
Political Science and International Relations Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC :
PAPER – I
Political Theory and Indian Politics:
1. Political Theory: meaning and approaches.
2. Theories of the State: Liberal, Neoliberal, Marxist, Pluralist, Post-colonial, and feminist.
3. Justice: Conceptions of justice with special reference to Rawl’s theory of justice and its communitarian critiques.
4. Equality: Social, political, and economic; the relationship between equality and freedom; Affirmative action.
5. Rights: Meaning and theories; different kinds of rights; the concept of Human Rights.
6. Democracy: Classical and contemporary theories; different models of democracy – representative, participatory, and deliberative.
7. Concept of power, hegemony, ideology, and legitimacy.
8. Political Ideologies: Liberalism, Socialism, Marxism, Fascism, Gandhism, and Feminism.
9. Indian Political Thought: Dharmashastra, Arthashastra, and Buddhist traditions; Sir Syed Ahmed Khan, Sri Aurobindo, M.K. Gandhi, B.R. Ambedkar, M.N. Roy.
10. Western Political Thought: Plato, Aristotle, Machiavelli, Hobbes, Locke, John S. Mill, Marx, Gramsci, Hannah Arendt.
Indian Government and Politics:
1. Indian Nationalism:
(a) Political Strategies of India’s Freedom Struggle: Constitutionalism to mass Satyagraha, Non-cooperation, Civil Disobedience; Militant and revolutionary movements, Peasant and workers’ movements.
(b) Perspectives on Indian National Movement: Liberal, Socialist, and Marxist; Radical humanist and Dalit.
2. Making of the Indian Constitution: Legacies of the British rule; different social and political perspectives.
3. Salient Features of the Indian Constitution: The Preamble, Fundamental Rights and Duties, Directive Principles; Parliamentary System and Amendment Procedures; Judicial Review and Basic Structure doctrine.
4. (a) Principal Organs of the Union Government: Envisaged role and actual working of the Executive, Legislature, and Supreme Court.
(b) Principal Organs of the State Government: Envisaged role and actual working of the Executive, Legislature, and High Courts.
5. Grassroots Democracy: Panchayati Raj and Municipal Government; the significance of 73rd and 74th Amendments; Grassroot movements.
6. Statutory Institutions/Commissions: Election Commission, Comptroller and Auditor General, Finance Commission, Union Public Service Commission, National Commission for Scheduled Castes, National Commission for Scheduled Tribes, National Commission for Women; National Human Rights Commission, National Commission for Minorities, National Backward Classes Commission.
7. Federalism: Constitutional provisions; changing nature of center-state relations; integrationist tendencies and regional aspirations; inter-state disputes.
8. Planning and Economic Development: Nehruvian and Gandhian perspectives; the role of planning and public sector; Green Revolution, land reforms and agrarian relations; liberalization and economic reforms.
9. Caste, Religion, and Ethnicity in Indian Politics.
10. Party System: National and regional political parties, ideological and social bases of parties; patterns of coalition politics; Pressure groups, trends in electoral behavior; changing socio-economic profile of Legislators.
11. Social Movements: Civil liberties and human rights movements; women’s movements; environmentalist movements.
Comparative Politics and International Relations
Comparative Political Analysis and International Politics:
1. Comparative Politics: Nature and major approaches; political economy and political sociology perspectives; limitations of the comparative method.
2. State in comparative perspective: Characteristics and changing nature of the State in capitalist and socialist economies, and, advanced industrial and developing societies.
3. Politics of Representation and Participation: Political parties, pressure groups, and social movements in advanced industrial and developing societies.
4. Globalisation: Responses from developed and developing societies.
5. Approaches to the Study of International Relations: Idealist, Realist, Marxist, Functionalist, and Systems theory.
6. Key concepts in International Relations: National interest, Security and power; Balance of power and deterrence; Transnational actors and collective security; World capitalist economy and globalization.
7. Changing International Political Order:
(a) Rise of superpowers; strategic and ideological Bipolarity, arms race and Cold War; nuclear threat;
(b) Non-aligned movement: Aims and achievements;
(c) Collapse of the Soviet Union; Unipolarity and American hegemony; relevance of non-alignment in the contemporary world.
8. Evolution of the International Economic System: From Bretton woods to WTO; Socialist economies and the CMEA (Council for Mutual Economic Assistance); Third World demand for new international economic order; Globalisation of the world economy.
9. United Nations: Envisaged role and actual record; specialized UN agencies-aims and functioning; the need for UN reforms.
10. Regionalisation of World Politics: EU, ASEAN, APEC, SAARC, NAFTA.
11. Contemporary Global Concerns: Democracy, human rights, environment, gender justice, terrorism, nuclear proliferation.
India and the World:
1. Indian Foreign Policy: Determinants of foreign policy; institutions of policy-making; continuity and change.
2. India’s Contribution to the Non-Alignment Movement: Different phases; current role.
3. India and South Asia:
(a) Regional Co-operation: SAARC – past performance and future prospects.
(b) South Asia as a Free Trade Area.
(c) India’s “Look East” policy.
(d) Impediments to regional co-operation: river water disputes; illegal cross-border migration; ethnic
conflicts and insurgencies; border disputes.
4. India and the Global South: Relations with Africa and Latin America; leadership role in the demand for NIEO and WTO negotiations.
5. India and the Global Centres of Power: USA, EU, Japan, China, and Russia.
6. India and the UN System: Role in UN Peace-keeping; demand for Permanent Seat in the Security Council.
7. India and the Nuclear Question: Changing perceptions and policy.
8. Recent developments in Indian Foreign policy: India’s position on the recent crisis in Afghanistan, Iraq, and West Asia, growing relations with US and Israel; a vision of new world order.
Sir I want to know the level of English comes in upsc
It’s quite normal English
ncrt books don’t download
Nanigopal Das says
Suggest me the names of books for political science as an optional.
Shri Debajit kalita says
THANKS FOR PROVIDING THE SYLLABUS.
ARE THE BOOKS OF B.A (MAJOR POLITICAL SCIENCE) USEFULL?
shiva shukla says
sir please suggest me the best book of political science for optional subject
Can I choose pol sci as optional in Hin medium.
I m a student of class 10th.My goal is cse .What will be better for me after 10th arts or sci.
Please guide me.
It’s depends on you ,you can attempt this exam with any background but if you want a strong base and wanna have an idea of these polity and history subject so you should go for arts stream it will be beneficial
And yes PSIR OPTIONAL is good it’ll help you in gs too
And than the thing of medium well in both medium u can choose It but in my opinion English medium will be much better
I m also from a Hindi medium background but I m doing my graduation in eng medium and preparing for it so it’s your choice but I suggest you English medium okay for now concentrate on your school studies you have time ….. Best of luck