Sociology of Politics examines and tries to sort out the causes of tensions in society resulting from any political activity. It also tries to show the consequences and results of any political activity and its impact both upon the common man and the society as a whole.
Sociology of Politics makes an enquiry into the society and places main emphasis upon social aspects of all changes. It argues that social forces which operate behind the political phenomena are more important than the phenomena itself, which is the primary concern of Political Science.
It undertakes a sociological appraisal of politics and regards political phenomena as a dependent variable and considers the underlying social phenomena as the explanatory variable. Sociology of Politics is a subfield of Sociology.
It considers man as a social animal who is also political in nature. It therefore concentrates on the study of social relations and in this exercise takes into account human political relations.
To sum up, we can say that Sociology of Politics is a subfield of Sociology. It represents a sociological concern of politics. It takes political process as a dependent variable and sociological phenomena as the fundamental explanatory variable.
No doubt Political Sociology incorporates within itself much of sociology of politics, yet the two are not synonymous.
Political Sociology is indeed a subfield of Political Science and serves as a connecting bridge between it and Sociology. It is something more than Sociology of Politics.
Political Sociology believes in a dialectical relationship between Sociology and Political Science.
(i) It gives equal emphasis on both the social and political variables.
(ii) Not only it explains the working of politics in relation to the society but also it examines the response to the exercise of power by the state and its government as well as the socio-economic environment of politics.
Giovanni Sartori makes an interesting analysis of the distinction between the Sociology of politics and Political Sociology. He says that sociology of politics is concerned with the consumer and not the producer. It is of the nature of an economic system which has buyers without producers and sellers.
In contrast Political Sociology takes into account the buyers and the sellers, the consumers and the producers. It studies politics in relation with society i.e. Inter-relationships and interactions between state, government and society. Political sociology is thus an interdisciplinary hybrid involving a fusion of Politics and Sociology.