Political sociology is the interdisciplinary study of power and the intersection of personality, society and politics. The field also examines how the political process is affected by major social trends as well as exploring how social policies are altered by various social forces. Political sociologists increasingly use a wide variety of relatively new quantitative and qualitative methodologies and incorporate theories and research from other social science cognate disciplines. The contributors focus on the current controversies and disagreements surrounding the use of different methodologies for the study of politics and society, and discussions of specific applications found in the widely scattered literature where substantive research in the field is published. This approach will solidly place the handbook in a market niche that is not occupied by the current volumes while also covering many of the same theoretical and historical developments that the other volumes cover. The purpose of this handbook is to summarize state-of-the-art theory, research, and methods used in the study of politics and society. This area of research encompasses a wide variety of perspectives and methods that span social science disciplines. The handbook is designed to reflect that diversity in content, method and focus. In addition, it will cover developments in the developed and underdeveloped worlds.