Structure of political parties

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Structure of political parties


political party features
structure of political parties
social organization of political parties
political recruitment
public participation
political apathy
Cause and Effect (with reference to India)

Political party is an important concept of political sociology. Before analyzing the political party, a brief introduction to political sociology is all in China.

The place of political parties in a democratic political system is very important as a central concept. Political parties represent the distribution of power in a social system and the individuals and groups who aspire to power. They have been the principal means of tabulation, discipline and reconciliation of conflicting interests. In this way, political parties are also related to the goals of social system, social mobility, social changes, barriers to changes and social movements. Political parties are studied by both sociologists and political scientists, but there is a substantial difference in their approaches. Sociologists consider political parties as social groups while politicians view political parties as a major institution of government formation in the modern state.

Political party is an important concept of political sociology. Before analyzing the political party, a brief introduction of political sociology is expedient. political


Analysis of the interaction found between the political and social aspects of social life under Sociology studies the mutual relation, influence and association of various political and social variables. Political sociology does the work of presenting society and politics in a new perspective. Is. In other words, political sociology studies politicized society and socialized politics. Political sociology is taught in both sociology and political science in many universities, which has made it difficult to define it universally because sociologists give more importance to social aspects in their study and consider political sociology as a sub-branch of general sociology. On the other hand, politicians pay more attention to parties and consider it as a branch of political science.

The term political is traditionally used in the context of state, government and political institutions. s. Greer and P. Orleans have written that “the main study of political sociology is to describe, analyze and explain the unique social structure called state”. According to Crick, “Political means the process of treaties in the states. According to Max Weber, “Politics is understood to mean the effort to distribute power or the effort to influence the distribution of power in states or groups within states, but current sociologists do not study political institutions alone but consider all observable behavior (vemat anjapvadansa thami aapvatadh).” Let’s include them.

David Easton has written that, “The action related to the authoritative distribution of values in a society is political, that is, in the study of politics, the study of the state and formal political institutions is not only, but it is the social action which is involved in politics in all kinds of relations.” Asleswell has said that, “By the study of politics we mean the study of influence and influence, power and the mighty.” H. Chulau has written that, “the behavior of the individual is political in the sense and is a ruler or an obeyer when he compromises, promises and bargains, coerces and represents, fights and fears.” Definitions of Political Sociology


Those who consider it to be related to political science, while others keep those definitions in the category, which consider it to be a distinct branch of sociology.

Political sociologists analyze political party as a social group. They are considered as social groups because all kinds of social relations are found in them. Their membership is voluntary and formal. In these, a system of interdependencies and actions and interpersonal relations is found. Their operation is coordinated by goal oriented activities. Members of political parties are expected to behave rationally for the attainment of common goals. All political parties are structural responses to the political needs of the society. Sociologists study political parties and other social groups (such as families,

churches, business groups, etc.) The primary objective of political parties is to gain power and to retain power either alone or with the help of other parties. Their general ideological approach and the public service nature of their organization separates them from other groups. Thus, political parties also accommodate diverse socio-economic interests. For this reason, they are sometimes referred to as subcultures or multi-party.

seen as a correlation.

In the sense in which political parties are being used in political sociology, in fact it is not more than a hundred and fifty years old concept. In the year 1850, the present model of political party did not exist in any nation other than the United States of America. In the present times, the political consciousness has progressed so much that even the common man makes a comparative evaluation of the political parties today.


According to Joseph A. Schlesinger, the term ‘political party’ emerged as a result of the development of suffrage and representative institutions in Europe and America in the nineteenth century. They were related to those organizations whose goal was to get democratic position by electoral competition from one or other political parties. Later, the word party was used for organizations engaged in electoral competition, such as (some small parties, which do not aspire to gain office by influencing voters, revolutionary organizations engaged in the abolition of competitive elections, and ruling groups of authoritarian states such as China, North Korea, etc.) is used for.


MacIver defines a political party as a society organized in support of a principle or a policy which it tries to make the decisive object of governance by constitutional means.

Some scholars have given the definition of political party on the basis of the functions performed by it.

Joseph A. Schumpeter also emphasizes on electoral competition. According to him, ‘The first objective of every political party is to dominate other parties to gain power or to remain in power.

According to F. W. Riggs, ‘Party is the organization which nominates the candidates for the election of the Legislature. This definition is more comprehensive as it can include multi-party and single-party states. Dowse and Hughes have also described the nomination of candidates for the Legislatures as the main feature of the party.


In the words of Lapelombra and Wiener, “First, it is expected to organize public opinion and bring demands to the center of government power and decision, second, it is necessary to clarify the meaning and concept of the larger community among its followers And third, party political recruitment is closely related to the political leadership, who will have power and decision-making authority in their hands, and selection.


In the words of Coleman and Roseberg, “Political parties are associations which seek, singly or on a multiparty basis, or by electoral competition with other similar associations, to obtain or retain legal control over the staff and policies of the government of an actual or future autonomous state.” Constituted for a specific and declared purpose.” Electoral competition has been emphasized in this definition, due to which one party states have to be described.

From the above definitions of political party, we come to know that in these two characteristics of human nature, unanimity and organization, have been given importance and they are based on two different ideologies. MacIver’s definition is idealistic and according to it some basic principles of political party


Collective interests and government policies are determined. The definitions of Coleman and Roseberg and Schumpeter are based on real ideology because political parties are mainly considered as organizations struggling for power. Definitions based on this ideology seem more appropriate. Therefore, a political party can be defined more or less as an organization group that participates in the electoral process or nominates candidates to achieve specific goals, usually to obtain power.


There are certain features in the structure of a political party that differentiate it from other groups.

There is oligarchy in every political party. In the first stage, power is concentrated in the hands of a few experienced leaders, who are key functionaries, while in the second stage, the organization of the party is divided into a special stratification system and some autonomy is found at each level.

Membership in the party is continuous. One member keeps informing other members about the activities of the party. The doors of membership in the party are always open for new members.

A political party is an organization whose primary objective is the attainment of political leadership. In this, the leader of the party tries his best to grab power through the organized oligarchy (executive).
There are sub-structures and committees for social and economic purposes, which are based on geographical boundaries, social aggregates. Many conflicting groups in the party remain connected together for some purpose and political ideology.
Huh. Here it is an open structure. Some people are members of the party because they get a special place in the society because of it.
Political parties can be distinguished from other organizations by the above-mentioned features. The formation of political parties is found through two features of social system –


The basis of political power is ‘vote’, that is, the government is determined by the voting system.
intergroup competition for power

Half happens. That is, there is mutual competition for political power to grab power.












Maurice Duverger has presented a critical analysis of the social organization of a political party. He has tried to explain the organization of the party through a four-point classification. These classes are as follows-
form a committee or caucus


parentheses or cell lines


 Citizen Army or Militia




Caucus can be said to be a small group of well-known people of the party, which is neither interested in its expansion nor in its recruitment. In fact it is a closed group. Whose nature is semi-permanent. The caucus is more active only during elections and remains inactive during the time between elections. The small number of its members is not a measure of its strength because the individual influence, power and capacity of its members is much greater than their numbers. Therefore, their influence and capacity is more important than the number of its eminent members. Duverger cited the French Radical Party and the pre-1918 British Labor Party as examples. With the expansion of suffrage, the ‘caucus’ type of party declines.


Branch parties are the result of the expansion of suffrage in Western Europe. It is related to the public and it is not a closed group like the caucus because more importance is given to numbers than to qualities. Hence it is always interested in recruiting more and more members. Their political activities are not limited to elections only, but go on continuously. Branch is a bigger group than caucus, so it has more organization and more integration is found in it than caucus. In this, the division of stratification and duties is clear and there is also a feeling of locality and narrowness. It has a mostly centralized party structure and the primary units are organized on a geographical basis like constituencies. All the characteristics of the branch are found in the socialist parties of Europe. Catholic and conservative parties have followed this with more or less success. The German Social Democratic Party is a good example of this type of party on an organizational basis.


The third type of party organization described by Duverger is the bracket or cell, which is the invention of revolutionary communist parties. It is a much smaller group than a branch and its basis is business rather than geographical. Due to the business basis, the cell has to bind all the members working at a place in one thread. Factory, workshop, office and administration etc. can be its parts. Since a cell is a group of members engaged in the same business

They are engaged and meet every day during work, hence there is more party solidarity among its members. Individual cells do not have any direct relationship with other cells. The organization of the cell is essentially conspiratorial, and its construction style ensures that the destruction of a cell puts the entire team structure at risk as there is no communication between individual units at the same level. It is the most suitable medium for covert activism. Its secret activities are mainly political and are more important to the members. Cell groups are a means of struggle, propaganda, discipline and, if necessary, covert activism, rather than winning votes, grouping representatives, and keeping in touch with voters’ representatives. They have a tendency to consider winning the election to be of secondary importance. The concept of Praja Tantric centralism establishes centralized control over all aspects of the party.


The example of which was the Leninist party before 1917. Duverger also indicates animosity among members of the French Communist Party towards the cell structure.


Duverger’s fourth type of party organization is the militia type of organization. It is a type of private army whose members are recruited like soldiers and who have to live in discipline and undergo training like a military organization. Its structure is also similar to the military structure, that is, its members are organized into units, companies and battalions like the army.


The militia takes on the progressive characteristics of the army. The militia has no interest in election and parliamentary activities because it is a fundamental means of overthrowing the democratic system rather than strengthening it. Just as the cell is a communist invention, in the same way the militia is an invention of the revolutionaries. Hitler’s invading troops and Mussolini’s revolutionary militia are examples of this type of structure. Duverger this sign towards

Let’s say that no political party has ever been formed only on the basis of militia.

political party

The organized form in which political parties are present in front of us today, their history is not very ancient. Their origin is in the nineteenth century, but even before this, some organizations created by humans, even if not directly from the government, create public opinion and demand.


have been playing an important role in reaching the rulers. Formation has been done on various grounds. Political

of parties



In the formation of political parties, the psychological basis i.e. the tendencies inherent in human nature are important. Unanimity and organization are two major tendencies of human nature. Individuals with similar nature and values form a political party by getting organized and then try to maintain those values. The British Conservative Party has been formed by individuals who support the preservation of the conservative system. Some people want to bring change in the conservative system and to fulfill this purpose form liberal parties, while some people

On the basis of the aspiration of repetition of the era, reactionaries form parties.


Religion has played an important role in politics in human history and even today religious leaders and officials in many countries interfere in politics directly or indirectly. Religion plays a major role in the social organization of political parties. For example, in India, religion plays a central role in the social organization of parties like Muslim League, Akali Dal, Jansangh Hindu Mahasabha.

Regionalism or regionalism is also a major factor in the formation of political parties. Some regional parties are formed for the protection of regional interests and for quick settlement of regional problems. In India DMK, Telangana, Praja Samiti, Assam Gana Parishad, Jharkhand Mukti Morcha etc.

Political parties are also organized on economic or class lines. According to Marx, the relationship between political parties and classes is the central point of the theory of state and politics. Many researches show that there is a close relationship between class interest, party affiliations and electoral preferences and in most societies political parties represent electoral class interests. Labor Party in Britain, Labor Party in India, Farmers Union etc.

Caste is the basic feature of the Indian society. Caste has always influenced the social organization of political parties in India. Before independence, the movement for caste liberation has been influencing the formation of political parties. Dalit Class Welfare League, Bahishkrit Hitakarini Sabha, Justice Party are prime examples of this.

After independence, ‘caste’ became the main social factor bringing political dynamism in the electoral contest. ‘Ethnic fusion’ and ‘ethnic fragmentation’ began to play a central role in political processes. All political parties started deciding candidates on the basis of caste calculation. At present, caste is the main basis for the formation of political parties on the basis of caste. Samajwadi Party, Bahujan Samaj Party, Rashtriya Janata Dal, Janata Dal United etc. are prime examples of this.


Ideology also plays a major role in party organization. Formation of various parties based on Socialist, Leninist and Maoist ideologies has been a major feature of Indian politics.


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