This paper must be returned to the course D2L drop box by 11:59 p.m., Wednesday, March 8, 2017. Late papers will be subject to penalties: you will lose 5 grade points per day. The paper must be typed, double spaced, with 1 inch margins and 12 point font, and saved in the rich text format (.rtf). You may use your own notes, course lecture notes, and any other materials posted on the course D2L site to aid you in constructing your essays. Your essay should be 4-5 pages long but no more than 6 pages. Your essay should also contain at least two direct references to or quotes from the readings. For example, you might say: “by and large he sees this as something that benefits society in general (Smith, p.4).” Your name should appear on a cover sheet. Please use The Chicago Manual of Style to format your essays. Essay Topic: The two theoretical perspectives we have read about and discussed thus far (Pluralism/polyarchy and conflict theory) have attempted to explain the modern political process in one way or another. Each theory has offered an explanation of power and the role of institutions in democracy. Explain why power is an important topic for political sociology. Then compare and contrast the basic views of two perspectives with respect to power and political institutions. Emphasize what elements each perspective shares and where they disagree. For each of the two perspectives, discuss: where power is located in society, what assumptions each theory makes about individual actors, and what other organizations or elements of the social environment each perspective emphasizes (i.e., social movements, political parties, interest groups, etc.). Which theoretical perspective best explain the current political landscape of the United States? Why?

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