Gateways to Democracy,
5th Edition

John G. Geer, Richard Herrera, Wendy J. Schiller, Jeffrey A. Segal

ISBN-13: 9780357459218
Copyright 2022 | Published
720 pages | List Price: USD $187.95

Unraveling the complexities of the U.S. political system, Geer/Herrera/Schiller/Segal's GATEWAYS TO DEMOCRACY, 5th edition, highlights the "gateways" that facilitate -- or block -- participation. Illustrating the relevance of government to your personal life, the authors explain how the political system works and how individuals and groups opened gates and overcame barriers to influence public policy. Completely up to date, the 5th edition includes expansive coverage of the 2020 elections, the COVID-19 pandemic, diversity (with a focus on Black and Latino activism), the advancement of LGBTQ rights and other issues reflecting America's changing demographic infrastructure. Supreme Court cases illustrate the constitutional context in which U.S. democracy has evolved, while a Political Analytics feature helps you evaluate the vast amounts of data in today's political discourse. Also available: MindTap.


1. Gateways to American Democracy.
2. The Constitution.
3. Federalism.
4. Civil Liberties.
5. Civil Rights.
6. Public Opinion.
7. The News and Social Media.
8. Interest Groups.
9. Political Parties.
10. Elections and Campaigns.
11. Voting and Participation.
12. Congress.
13. The Presidency.
14. The Bureaucracy.
15. The Judiciary.
16. Economic, Domestic, and Foreign Policy.
A. The Declaration of Independence.
B. The Constitution of the United States.
C. Federalist Papers 10 and 51.
D. Electoral Maps, 2000-2020.

  • John G. Geer

    John G. Geer is the Ginny and Conner Searcy Dean of the College of Arts and Science, a professor of political science and co-director of the Vanderbilt Poll. He teaches Introduction to American Politics, as well as specialty courses on elections and campaigns, and has been honored with numerous teaching awards at both Arizona State University and Vanderbilt University. In addition, he has been a visiting scholar at Harvard University and Princeton University. Dr. Geer has published widely, including IN DEFENSE OF NEGATIVITY, which won the Goldsmith Prize from the Shorenstein Center at Harvard University. A frequent commentator in the press, he has made appearances on all the major networks (Fox News, CBS Evening News, CNN) and has been quoted in THE NEW YORK TIMES, THE WASHINGTON POST and the LOS ANGELES TIMES. He also has done interviews for major international outlets, such as BBC and Al Jazeera. He received his Ph.D. from Princeton University.

  • Richard Herrera

    Richard Herrera is professor emeritus of political science in the School of Politics and Global Studies at Arizona State University, where he taught for 30 years, including courses in American politics, American political parties and American politics and film. He also directed the ASU Capital Scholars Washington, D.C., Summer Internship program and received the Faculty Teaching Achievement Award at ASU in 2020. Dr. Herrera has contributed articles to the AMERICAN POLITICAL SCIENCE REVIEW, JOURNAL OF POLITICS, LEGISLATIVE STUDIES QUARTERLY and STATE POLITICS AND POLICY QUARTERLY. Currently, his research interests are focused on U.S. governors, their ideology, policy agendas and representative functions. He received his Ph.D. from the University of California, Santa Barbara.

  • Wendy J. Schiller

    Wendy Schiller is the Royce Family Professor of Teaching Excellence in Political Science and Professor of Public & International Affairs at Brown University, where she teaches courses on a wide range of American politics topics, including Introduction to the American Political Process, The American Presidency, Congress and Public Policy, Parties and Interest Groups, and The Philosophy of the American Founding. She also is a political analyst for local and national media outlets. Dr. Schiller's published works include ELECTING THE SENATE: INDIRECT DEMOCRACY BEFORE THE SEVENTEENTH AMENDMENT with Charles Stewart III, THE CONTEMPORARY CONGRESS with Burdett Loomis and PARTNERS AND RIVALS: REPRESENTATION IN U.S. SENATE DELEGATIONS. In her prior roles, she was legislative assistant for Sen. Daniel P. Moynihan, a federal lobbyist for Gov. Mario M. Cuomo, a guest scholar and Ph.D. fellow at the Brookings Institution and a postdoctoral fellow at Princeton University. She received her Ph.D. from the University of Rochester. She can be found on Twitter at profwschiller.

  • Jeffrey A. Segal

    Jeffrey A. Segal (PhD, Michigan State University) is SUNY Distinguished Professor and chair of the political science department at Stony Brook University. He has served as Senior Visiting Research Scholar at Princeton University and held a Guggenheim Fellowship. Segal is best known, with Harold Spaeth, as the leading proponent of the attitudinal model of Supreme Court decision-making. Segal has twice won the Wadsworth Award for a book (with Spaeth) or article 10 years or older with lasting influence on law and courts. He has also won the C. Herman Pritchett Award (again with Spaeth) for best book on law and courts. His work on the influence of strategic factors on Supreme Court decision-making won the Franklin Burdette Award from APSA. With Lee Epstein, Kevin Quinn, and Andrew Martin, he won Green Bag's award for exemplary legal writing. He has also won a national award sponsored by the American Bar Association for innovative teaching and instructional methods and materials in law and courts.

  • Revised and refreshed, the new 5th edition's dedicated focus on diversity and participation reflects the changing demographic infrastructure in the United States today.

  • Bringing chapter concepts to life, all-new opening chapter vignettes feature Oregon Gov. Kate Brown, author Ta-Nehisi Coates, Mayor Pete Buttigieg, U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases Director Anthony Fauci, former President Barack Obama and Iowa pollster J. Ann Selzer.

  • A new Election 2020 feature puts chapter concepts into real-world context. Topics include the changing and frustrated electorate, the role of the media, the increasing influence of underrepresented groups in local and national politics and more.

  • New coverage includes insightful analysis of the health, social and economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • A Political Analytics feature in every chapter gives students hands-on experience evaluating the vast amounts of data present in today's political discourse. Students are asked to look closely at visual representations of data and to think critically about what they see. Topics include the effects of the 3/5 compromise, the growing numbers of Latinos in the electorate, the role of social media, media bias and fake news.

  • Delivering the most current coverage available, the 5th Edition includes updates from the 2020 elections, Donald Trump's presidential reelection campaign and the impact of his administration, and changes to the federal government.

  • New coverage includes Democratic Presidential candidate Joe Biden's decision to choose the first African American female vice presidential candidate.

  • An expanded section on protest politics includes the #MeToo movement, Dreamers and Black Lives Matter (#BLM).

  • Updated discussions detail how the Supreme Court has changed following the appointment of Neil Gorsuch to take the seat of the late Justice Antonin Scalia and the appointment of Brett Kavanaugh to take the seat of retired Justice Anthony Kennedy.

  • New coverage details recent Supreme Court cases impacting the LGBTQ community, including Obergefell v. Hodges (2015) guaranteeing the Constitutional right to same-sex marriage and Bostock v. Clayton County, Georgia (2020) banning employment discrimination against members of the LGBTQ community.

  • Helping students engage with key concepts and find inspiration from real-life success stories, chapter-opening vignettes spotlight individuals who have successfully navigated their own way in politics. The important role of the vignette for the instructor is to show students how people like them have made a difference in American political and social life. Vignette subjects vary by historical era, career choice, gender, race, ethnicity and party affiliation.

  • The text's expansive policy coverage includes a section in every chapter as well as a stand-alone chapter at the end of the book, enabling instructors to focus on policy as much or as little as they want. Each chapter highlights a domestic, economic or foreign policy issue related to chapter concepts. Students learn how policies such as minimum wage and national security surveillance are a product of the policymaking process and how that process can serve as a gateway to citizen participation. Hands-on "Construct Your Own Policy" exercises ask students how they can apply what they've learned to impact policymaking.

  • Each chapter features a Supreme Court case to illustrate the constitutional and legal context in which American democracy has evolved. Critical-thinking questions at the end of the feature tie the case back to the chapter's content and the book's themes of gateways, responsiveness and equality.

  • Questions in the margins and interpretive questions at the end of each chapter ask students to summarize and apply what they have learned about American democracy and evaluate our democratic system in terms of responsiveness and equality. These features sharpen students' analytical skills and encourage them to begin evaluating the success of the U.S. system.

  • Drawing from current headlines, this edition delivers in-depth coverage of such emerging issues as COVID-19, Black Lives Matter and the use of force by police, employment discrimination against members of the LGBTQ community, the legalization of marijuana and the impact of partisanship on Congress.

  • MindTap for Gateways to Democracy, 5th Edition, is an immersive, outcomes-driven online learning experience. In addition to a dynamic eTextbook that brings the printed text to life, a variety of assignable, auto-graded activity types in MindTap enable students to flex their critical thinking muscles while soaking in key concepts. Learners are encouraged to read with close attention, write persuasively with logic, interpret data, consider and articulate their own positions on key course topics, and much more. Integration with your Learning Management System allows you to easily export grades and access analytics.

Cengage provides a range of supplements that are updated in coordination with the main title selection. For more information about these supplements, contact your Learning Consultant.

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