Competitive Exams: Political Science Study Material: Glossary M

Political Science Glossary: M


Mandates are typically claimed by successful parties in national elections even when they have actually gained only a smallish plurality of votes. If a party, or a candidate, has stood for election on a particular set of policies, then, having won election, a ‘mandate’ from the people has been gained to implement those policies. Thus governments often claim that they are ‘mandated’ to carry out some action even if there is no good reason to believe that the policy in question had very much to do with their electoral victory. The original meaning is where some body, perhaps a constituency division of a political party or a trade union branch, on being required to send a representative to a national conference, gives the chosen representative binding instructions to argue or vote in a fixed way on some particular issue.


If refers to a document of the political parties, listing their policies and programs and their achievements and it is released to the general public before every general elections.

Marital Law

Marital law is a state of affairs declared by a civilian government in which the military forces are empowered to rule, govern and control an area, which can be a small locality or the entire nation, in a way involving. Direct force, and without the usual constraints of democratic decision-making or the acceptance of civil rights. It is always seen as a temporary state of affairs and, unlike a military regime, has legitimacy, because it has been decided upon and granted by the civilian government. Martial law is, without doubt, both draconian and unpopular; there have been no instances of marital law being declared in a major Western democracy since the Second World War, though Poland was subjected to marital law in 1981 − 83.

Minority Government

A form of Government which does not enjoy the confidence of the Lok Sabha on its own and survives on support of other political parties from outside the Government. For example, the Chandrashekhar Government in 1990 − 1991, the Deve Gowda and the I. K. Gujral Governments during 1996 − 1997 survived on the Congress support from outside:


The ideology of scientific socialism adopted by Karl Marx (1818 − 1883) is called Marxism. Marxism holds that economic relations of productions are fundamental to the society and social development; the class struggle is found between those who own the means of production and distribution and those who are deprived of this control; the capitalism contains the seed of destruction and the revolution would lead to the establishment of the final stage of the communism characterized by a class-less, exploitation-less and the State-less society.

Mid-term poll

If the popular House of the Parliament is not able to complete its full term, it is dissolved and midterm elections are held to constitute a new House. Such elections are called mid-term poll.


A monarchy is a state ruled by an individual who has a position at the apex of an aristocratic pyramid of honor and authority which is generally inherited through a family connection. Monarchy is a very ancient system of government (it was, indeed, one a of Aristotle's three basic forms of good government, along with aristocracy and democracy) which developed independently in various continents; many monarchial systems seem to have started with some form of election, with the succession later becoming hereditary by primogeniture and, until recent decades, usually male primogeniture. The most common form of monarchy today is constitutional monarchy, where the monarch has strictly limited powers and must accept the role and power of other bodies, such as parliaments and cabinets.


It is a form of Government when the ruler/the King of a country comes from a hereditary line. This is opposed to the democratic form of Government as there is no provision of elections to seek people's consent in formation and running of the Government. However, if the King becomes a titular head of the State and the real powers of the Government are vested in the people's representatives, it is called the Constitutional Monarchy.


The political label of multilateralism was introduced into political terminology in the context of nuclear disarmament. Its meaning is taken by opposition to unilateralism, the doctrine that a country should abandon the ownership of nuclear weapons, regardless of the actions or intentions of any other power. As such multilateralism can either mean simply opposition to this doctrine, or. As is more often presented, a different policy of reduction in nuclear weaponry. If given this latter meaning, multilateralism is a preparedness to reduce or abolish nuclear arsenals step by step in combination with similar movements by the perceived enemy, which was traditionally the USSR.