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Suggested Political Science Books for IAS Mains

Political Science is opted by many IAS aspirants as Pol Science is a popular subject at the undergrad and post-graduate level. No wonder I receive so many requests to share the most useful political science books for IAS Mains. In case you need the Political Science syllabus you can get it here.

Political Science Books for Paper 1

Unlike other subjects political science paper 1 focuses on Indian aspects of the subject.

History of Political Thought – Plato to Marx

Before starting out with any subject you should first get a grasp of its fundamentals and its no different with Political Science. History of Political Thought by Mukherjee and Ramaswamy explores the concept of Political Theory in detail including the different perspectives like political theory as a history of political thought, as a technique of analysis, etc. It then explores the key theoretical concepts in political theory before proceeding to discuss key concepts like Positivism and Behaviouralism. And this is just the first chapter.

The core of History of Political Thought explores the views of different political thinkers like Plato, Aristotle, Locke, Rousseau, Karl Marx and others. This covers Section A syllabus in different measure like political theory, theories of the state, and political ideologies. The language of this book for political science is straight forward and easy to grasp without too many high sounding terminologies. A recommended read.

Political Theory by O.P Gauba

Books of every Mains subject like Public Administration, Sociology or Geography have one or two definitive books by a renowned author that you just cannot afford to skip if you wish to score well in your chosen subject. The same holds true for Pol Science.

Dr O.P Gauba is a highly respected author and authority figure in Political Science. In Political Theory Gauba discusses the concepts of State, Sovereignty, Law, Power, Citizenship and other core concepts of Political Science in detail. O.P Gauba’s language is very reader friendly and he breaks down seemingly difficult concepts to levels that beginners to Political Science can easily grasp.

But Political Theory is not just limited to concepts rather it goes much beyond. It discusses Marxist and Democratic theories, ponders over current issues like globalization, and elaborates on Gandhian concepts of sustainable development. An added bonus is that O.P Gauba has provided maps, flow charts and illustrations to put his point across. This will be all the more useful for IAS aspirants. A must read book for Political Science.

Indian Political Thought: Themes and Thinkers

If you glance through the Political Science syllabus you will realize that Indian Political Thought is a separate topic in Paper 1. Thankfully, Indian Political Thought by Mahendra Prasad and Himanshu Roy seems to be written with the civil services exam in view. This book covers all the major schools of Indian political thought from the time of Kautilya and Manu.

Indian Political Thought then elaborates prominent political thinkers like B.R Ambedkar, Gandhi and others in detail. Another recommended book for political science for IAS mains.

Our Constitution or Introduction to the Constitution of India

One advantage of taking political science as an optional for IAS mains is that it covers a significant portion of GS paper as well. This is also means that some GS books are very relevant as political science books as well. One of these important books is Our Constitution by Subhash Kashyap. I have already it  GS Books for IAS Mains. Still, elaborating it from the Political Science books perspective Our Constitution these areas of paper 1: Salient Features of the Indian Constitution, Landmarks in Constitutional Development, the Executive System, and Supreme Court and High Courts.

The other popular book for covering these topics in Introduction to the Constitution of India by D.D Basu, but I don’t recommend it for reasons mentioned in the post on GS mains books for IAS. Rather you should go with Our Constitution as it is very easy to grasp for beginners as well as experienced IAS aspirants.

Our Parliament by Subhash Kashyap

One of the topics is paper 1 is on Indian Parliament and the various parliamentary committees. To understand these very important topics not just for Political Science but GS Mains as well you should go through Our Parliament authored by Subhash Kashyap. This book for political science discusses the role, responsibilities and functioning of the Indian Parliament. It also discusses the system of Parliamentary Committees which is important for Pub Ad as well apart from Pol Science and GS. All this makes Our Parliament an important read.

Politics in India by Rajni Kothari

The last book for political science I recommend for paper 1 is Politics in India by eminent political scientist Rajni Kothari. This book traces the evolution of the party system in India, coalition politics, social base and ideologies that influence and impact politics in India. Politics in India also touches upon the aspects of caste and class in Indian politics which is also part of the paper 1 syllabus.

Political Science Paper 2 Books

Political Science books for paper 2 will be very useful for GS and Essay papers as well. After all paper 2 deals with International Relations and International Organisations which are important topics in GS paper 2 as well. So covering this part will take care of an important portion of GS paper as well.

Foreign Policy of India

Gupta and Shukla have authored a very useful book on Indian Foreign Policy. This book traces the evolution of Indian Foreign policy from the British period and its gradual development and evolution during the freedom struggle. The impact of Nehruvian and Gandhian thoughts on India’s foreign policy.

Foreign Policy of India explains all the doctrines and core principles of India’s foreign policy like Non-Alignment, Nuclear Non-proliferation, Peace co-existence etc in a very lucid manner. Civil Services aspirants will find Foreign Policy of India useful not just for political science but GS as well.

India’s Foreign Policy in the 21st Century

Political Science paper 2 syllabus contains various topics on India’s relations with its neighbours and major world powers. India’s Foreign Policy in the 21st Century analyses India’s relations with China, Pakistan, Nepal, Russia, South Asia, Africa and Middle East. This book also delves into the contemporary issues affecting these regions from an Indian perspective.

United Nations by Rumki Basu

The final book I will suggest for paper 2 is United Nations by Rumki Basu. Basu is an eminent author of books on Political Science and Public Administration. In this book Basu discusses the evolution, role and functioning of UN and its organizations. United Nations is thus an important book for Political Science as well as GS.

If you feel there are too many books to go through, remember many of these books will also be useful for GS paper 2 apart from Essay and Interview. So get going with these useful books for political science.

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Vimlaksh
 

I am your friend, mentor and guide to help crack the IAS exam. I've cleared the Prelims everytime including the first and also reached the Interview stage. Know more about me

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 33 comments
Anil

Sir,

Is it good to take sociology and anthropology as optional subjects. Also could you please list the important books for anthropology.

Reply
Ranjit

Are these books enough, madame? I would like to know your view on this as I am planning..

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Ranjit

Please tell me if the books listed above are sufficient …..i want to take pol sci as one optional! your reply is highly rewarding for me.

thanks

Reply
Ranjit

because everywhere there are so many book list which i feel is very difficult for working ppl like me to comprehend

Reply
nitish

hello Sir,
I have gone through all of your blogs, basically I am working in a company and want to appear for the exam in the next year, your guidance was amazing, it clarified my most of the doubts and plus provided me with some very good books…
I also wanted to ask 1 thing (evryone please suggest),if I take optionals pub ad and sociology… how will it turn out?… or socio and geography?…
any guidance will be helpful….

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Umashankar

Will somebody tell me the books for the optional ” Animal husbandry and veterinery science

Reply
    Prateek

    Hey bro do read brillan notes plus standard subject books like baneerjee , tomar , thomas shastri , dv reddy , gurvinder singh , sukumar dey

    Reply
    Prateek

    Hey bro do read brillan notes plus standard subject books like baneerjee , tomar , thomas shastri , dv reddy , gurvinder singh , sukumar dey

    Reply
Gurudarshan

Hi,

please let me know whether laxmikanth book is useful for political science

Reply
Pushpit bodwal

Thank you very much sir,
This is the great help for new candidates.
I hope u will provide more information about international political and economic relation,

Reply
indu

this information is really very helpful to all ias aspirants

Reply
indu

this information is really very helpful to all ias aspirants

Reply
Dharmesh Kemparaju

Sir, This site has been very useful for me. Please suggest books for INDIAN HISTORY MAINS AND ESSAY also.

Reply
Dharmesh Kemparaju

Sir, This site has been very useful for me. Please suggest books for INDIAN HISTORY MAINS AND ESSAY also.

Reply
sindhu

I am confused……..please suggest me which subjects were the scoring for taking as optionals

Reply
sindhu

I am confused……..please suggest me which subjects were the scoring for taking as optionals

Reply
Shailesh Kumar Vishwakarma

sir
i want portical science book in hindi medium please sir tell me about that book from where to get that book in hindi …….

Reply
EMMANUEL

SIR
I HAVE BEEN FOLLOWING YOUR WEBSITE CONSISTENTLY AND YOUR GUIDANCE IS REALLY VERY HELPFUL. CAN YOU PLEASE TELL ME SOME ANSWER WRITING TIPS FOR MAINS. I AM NOT ABLE TO ANALYSE THE STRATEGY BEHIND IT. I’LL BE THANKFUL TO YOU.

Reply
shivani

i hope these will help me … thanks a lot

Reply
NITESH SHINDE

sir iam now last year of engg ,so i want to know about which kind of activity should i do for cracking the prelim…plz sir guide me

Reply
dheeraj kaushal

thnku so much sir. it us really helpful for me.
sir mera ias ka target 2019 ka hai or mai abhi ba 2bd year m hun. to ma jnu se karna chta hun. so plz guide realted to iys entrance exam…

Reply
nishant narayan

aptly analysed…..

Reply
SUBHAM

PLEASE SEND LIST OF BOOKS POLITICAL SCIENCE IN HINDI

Reply
Shri Debajit kalita

IF I READ POLITICAL SCIENCE BOOK OF CLASS-11, 12, & B.A LEVAL BOOKS OF REGIONAL BORDS OR UNVERSITY LIKE ASSAM’S; BECAUSE I AM BELONG TO ASSSAM.THEN WILL IT BE EFFECTIVE FOR ME ?
AND CAN ANY ONE TELL ME TOO HYPOTHETICALY THE MARKS HAVE TO OBTAIN ATLEAST IN OPTIONAL ?

Reply
Imtiaz Ahmad

Dear Sir,

I am thinking best career of my daughter. could you please advise what i should do to help for better future. please note that she is not interested in Science. She is still in class ix and shall be promoted in x next year in the month of March. I want to take initiative from now to get enough time to prepare roadmap to get success in future.

with regards

Eng. Imtiaz Ahmad

Reply
Akash Gupta

I want to know all political science book name for pre to main(optional-poli. Science) .please tell me all books name

Reply

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