The Economic and Political Contexts
The Economic and Political Contexts helps students understand how economic fluctuations and political change interact with shifting social values to shape and reshape social policy. New to this chapter is a much greater emphasis on the international political and economic context that increasingly influences our social policy, including the rise of populism and economic nationalism. We added information about income and wealth inequality and how they shape both economic outcomes and political alignments. In addition to core content describing how the branches of government and working of the U.S. economy influence social policy, Chapter 4 has been thoroughly updated so that students and instructors have the most current statistics with which to ground consideration of political dynamics and economic conditions. Key terms are bolded throughout, to help students and instructors draw attention to those foundational concepts that will equip them to analyze policies presented later in the text—and in their practice.