The two-volume Oxford Companion to Comparative Politics fills a gap in scholarship on an increasingly important field within Political Science. Comparative Politics, the discipline devoted to the politics of other countries or peoples, has been steadily gaining prominence as a field of study, allowing politics to be viewed from a wider foundation than a concentration on domestic affairs would permit. Comparativists apply various theories and concepts to analyze the similarities and differences between political units, using the results of their research to develop causalities and generalizations. Each of these theories and outcomes are thoroughly defined in the Companion, as are major resultant conclusions, those comparativists who have influenced the field in significant ways, and politicians whose administrations have shaped the evaluation of contrasting governments. Approximately 200 revised and updated articles from the Oxford Companion to Politics of the World would serve as a foundation for the set, while over 100 new entries would thoroughly examine the field in a lasting, more theoretical than current-event-based, way.
New entries cover such topics as failed states, Grand Strategies, and Soft Power; important updates include such countries as China and Afghanistan and issues like Capital Punishment, Gender and Politics, and Totalitarianism. Country entries include the most significant nations to permit a focus on non time-sensitive analysis. In addition, 25 1,000-word interpretive essays by notable figures analyze the discipline, its issues and accomplishments. Collectively, entries promote deeper understanding of a field that is often elusive to non-specialists.