Politics in Time
By Andrew R. Rutten
This article appeared in the Fall 2006 issue of The Independent Review

“History matters” is a cliché whose validity is widely assumed, but political scientist Paul Pierson shows precisely how history matters in his book Politics in Time: History, Institutions, and Social Analysis (2004). By extending economic historians’ concepts of positive feedback and path dependence to the field of politics, Pierson offers novel insights as to why some things in the social world change and others stay the same.

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