Competitive Exams: Political Science Study Material: Glossary I

Political Science Glossary: I

Impeachment

It refers to the provision of removing important public officials from their office by passing a resolution to that effect by the Parliament. In India, the President is removed through impeachment motion passed by a two third majority of total membership in each House of the Parliament.

Imperialism

Imperialism is the policy or goal of extending the power and rule of a government beyond the boundaries of its original state, and taking into one political unit other nations or lands. There are variations in the extent to which the imperial power assumes administrative and political control for the states that make up the empire; some retain degrees of independence and identity, while others are subsumed entirely into the institutions of the imperial state. Neither is it necessary that an empire has any specific form of central government, though there must be one central and ultimately overwhelming force, otherwise it is more likely to be an alliance, league or loose federation. In the modern world many dictators have come to power as leaders of mass movements.

Insurgency

It means organisation of secret clandestine activities to destabilise or overthrow the Government by a group of persons. Such persons are called insurgents and more often, they get support from some foreign countries which are not in good term with the concerned nation. In lighter form, insurgents may act as an illegal pressure group which employ tactics of violence and arm struggle to seed their goals.

Interim Government

This Government is formed during the transitional phase of the history of the the country. It is a full-fledged Government and can take any policy decisions. In India, the interim Government came to power with the Independence of India Act on 15th August and lasted till March, 1952.

Iron Curtain

This term is used with respect to the communist countries like the former Soviet Union or China to signify their policy of restriction and control over the freedoms of their respective citizens to ward off any external influence on their thoughts and behaviour. The net result of the Iron Curtain is that the external world is totally unaware of the political happenings in these countries and the rule of the Communist Party is firmly entrenched.

Isolationism

Isolationism is a foreign policy strategy in which a nation announces that it has absolutely no interest in international affairs, nor in the affairs of other nations, as long as they do not affect any vital interest of its own; this implies a neutrality in most possible conflicts. The most famous example is the foreign policy of the USA during much of the 19th century and in the inter-war period of the 20th century, where isolationism as regards any part of the globe other than the western hemisphere was a corollary of the Monroe Doctrine enunciated in 1823.