Psychology Political Psychology
by
Ingrid J. Haas
  • LAST MODIFIED: 25 February 2016
  • DOI: 10.1093/obo/9780199828340-0178

Introduction

The field of political psychology explains political behavior as a function of both individual- and group-level psychological processes. While the field is interdisciplinary, political psychologists tend to work in either psychology or political science departments. Although the overall aim is often similar, researchers from each discipline approach the same questions in different ways, and interested scholars are encouraged to examine literatures from both fields. The general approach to research is to focus on individual political attitudes, emotion, beliefs, and behavior, and attempt to explain these phenomena using psychological research and theory. Historical approaches to research in this field often relied on case studies or qualitative approaches, whereas newer work has incorporated a variety of quantitative methods (surveys, experiments). Related fields of biopolitics and political neuroscience have begun to utilize physiological and neuroscientific methods to address questions of interest to political psychologists. This bibliography provides resources for general overviews of the field of political psychology, as well as relevant textbooks and academic journals. In addition, resources are provided in relation to a variety of specific research topics and areas.

General Overviews

There are a number of comprehensive overviews of the field of political psychology that focus both on the historical trajectory of the field as well as challenges unique to working in this interdisciplinary area. These are primarily geared toward graduate students and researchers. Huddy, et al. 2013 is the second edition of the most popular handbook of political psychology, which is probably the best place for interested researchers to start. Krosnick, et al. 2010 and Tetlock 2007 are chapters on political psychology from social psychology handbooks. Sears 1987 and McGuire 1993 each provide overviews of the field of political psychology, relevant areas of research, and shifts in the focus of this work over time.

  • Huddy, L., D. O. Sears, and J. S. Levy, eds. 2013. The Oxford handbook of political psychology. 2d ed. New York: Oxford Univ. Press.

    DOI: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199760107.001.0001Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Essential reference for scholars of political psychology, this handbook features chapters on a variety of topics in political psychology written by many of the most prominent scholars in the field.

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    • Krosnick, J. A., P. S. Visser, and J. Harder. 2010. The psychological underpinnings of political behavior. In Handbook of social psychology. 5th ed. Vol. 2. Edited by S. T. Fiske, D. T. Gilbert, and G. Lindzey, 1288–1342. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

      DOI: 10.1002/9780470561119.socpsy002034Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

      This chapter in the main handbook of social psychology gives an overview and introduction to the field of political psychology.

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      • McGuire, W. J. 1993. The poly-psy relationship: Three phases of a long affair. In Explorations in political psychology. Edited by S. Iyengar and W. J. McGuire, 9–35. Durham, NC: Duke Univ. Press.

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        Provides a historical overview of research in political psychology and describes how the focus of this work has shifted over time.

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        • Sears, D. O. 1987. Political psychology. Annual Review of Psychology 38:229–255.

          DOI: 10.1146/annurev.ps.38.020187.001305Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

          This review gives a historical overview of work in political psychology, focusing on areas such as personality, public opinion, and conflict.

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          • Tetlock, P. E. 2007. Psychology and politics: The challenges of integrating levels of analysis in social science. In Social psychology: Handbook of basic principles. 2d ed. Vol. 2. Edited by A. W. Kruglanski and E. T. Higgins, 888–912. New York: Guilford.

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            This chapter provides an overview of political psychology, with special attention paid to challenges of work in this field.

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            Textbooks

            Given that political psychology is a relatively young field, there are a limited number of textbooks available for undergraduate courses. But, the available choices provide a range of options for undergraduate coursework. Cottam, et al. 2009 and Houghton 2015 are introductory textbooks that provide a broad overview of the field. Marcus 2012 is more advanced and incorporates more discussion of biopolitics and neuroscience. Finally, the Jost and Sidanius 2004 edited volume contains a collection of journal articles suitable for more advanced undergraduate students.

            • Cottam, M. L., B. Dietz-Uhler, E. Mastors, and T. Preston. 2009. Introduction to political psychology. 2d ed. New York: Psychology Press.

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              Undergraduate textbook that provides a broad overview of the field of political psychology, with emphasis on both individual- and group-level psychological processes.

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              • Houghton, D. P. 2015. Political psychology: Situations, individuals, and cases. 2d ed. New York: Routledge.

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                Undergraduate textbook that provides a broad overview of the field of political psychology, focusing on situational and individual factors and their intersection.

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                • Jost, J. T., and J. Sidanius, eds. 2004. Political psychology: Key readings. New York: Psychology Press.

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                  Collection of influential journal articles on a variety of topics in political psychology. Articles are condensed and accessible to advanced undergraduate students.

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                  • Marcus, G. E. 2012. Political psychology: Neuroscience, genetics, and politics. New York: Oxford Univ. Press.

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                    Textbook appropriate for advanced undergraduates that incorporates discussion of newer approaches to political psychology, including genetics, biopolitics, and neuroscience.

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                    Journals

                    Given that political psychology is an interdisciplinary field, research in this area is published in a wide variety of journals. There are a few journals specific to the field of political psychology that are explicitly focused on interdisciplinary work. In addition, work in political psychology is often published in both psychology and political science journals.

                    Political Psychology Journals

                    The primary journal of the International Society for Political Psychology is Political Psychology. There are also newer journals focused specifically on political psychology, including Advances in Political Psychology and the Journal of Social and Political Psychology.

                    Psychology Journals

                    A number of psychology journals publish work in the area of political psychology, but the focus in the top journals is often more on advancing psychological theory than on understanding political problems per se. These include both general psychology journals such as Psychological Science, and social psychology journals such as the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, and Social Psychological and Personality Science. There are also more applied social psychology journals that publish work on a variety of topics central to political psychology, including journals such as Basic and Applied Social Psychology and the Journal of Social Issues.

                    Political Science Journals

                    There are also a number of political science journals that occasionally publish work in the area of political psychology. This list includes top journals such as the American Journal of Political Science and Journal of Politics as well as specialty journals focused on political behavior and public opinion such as Electoral Studies, Political Behavior, and Public Opinion Quarterly. Political psychology work will likely also fit well within the aims of the new Journal of Experimental Political Science.

                    Ambivalence

                    The term ambivalence has typically been used to refer to attitudes that contain both positive and negative components and has often been equated with ideas about conflict and sometimes dissonance. However, many different types of ambivalence are possible—including conflict between positive and negative evaluations, or conflict between affective or emotional responses and cognitive responses. Work in political psychology has examined the consequences of ambivalence in relation to policy attitudes, candidate evaluations, and political identification. Alvarez and Brehm 1995 is one example of how ambivalence has been examined in relation to policy attitudes. Lavine, et al. 1998 and Lavine 2001 examine the impact of ambivalence on candidate evaluation and voting behavior. McGraw, et al. 2003 contrasts ambivalence with uncertainty in the context of candidate evaluation. Lavine, et al. 2012 examines ambivalence about partisan identification.

                    Attitudes

                    Attitudes research has often relied on political stimuli to examine processes involved in attitude function, as well as attitude formation, change, and persuasion. Political psychologists have been especially interested in understanding the degree to which political attitudes predict political behavior, as well as related processes of perception and judgment. Lodge, et al. 1995 examines the influence of online versus memory-based processing in candidate evaluation. Lord, et al. 1979 and Sweeney and Gruber 1984 are classic examinations of motivated reasoning processes such as biased assimilation of information and selective exposure, respectively. Taber and Lodge 2006 is a more recent investigation of motivated reasoning processes in relation to policy attitudes. Bizer and Petty 2005 examines the impact of valence framing on resistance to persuasion. Shook and Fazio 2009 examines ideological differences in attitude formation processes. Fazio and Williams 1986 investigates the link between political attitudes, perception, and behavior. Lundberg and Payne 2014 uses implicit measurement of attitudes to examine the vote choice of undecided voters.

                    Authoritarianism

                    Early work on authoritarianism was largely motivated by an interest in explaining prejudice and discriminatory behavior in the aftermath of the Second World War and other massive political conflicts. This work has shifted focus over time, from examining the psychoanalytic roots of authoritarianism, to studying the developmental trajectory, approaching it as a personality trait, and examining the underlying motivations. Most scholars have suggested that authoritarianism is more likely to coincide with right-wing ideologies, but there has been some debate about whether or not left-wing authoritarians also exist. Adorno, et al. 1950 is the classic work on this topic, and Brown 1965 provides an early overview and some critiques of the theory. Altemeyer 1981 and Altemeyer 1998 provide an updated version of the concept of right-wing authoritarianism (RWA). Doty, et al. 1991 and Feldman and Stenner 1997 examine the relatively well-established link between threat and authoritarianism. Reifen Tagar, et al. 2014 provides a more recent analysis of the link between child development and authoritarianism.

                    • Adorno, T. W., E. Frenkel-Brunswik, D. J. Levinson, and R. N. Sanford. 1950. The authoritarian personality. New York: Norton.

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                      Classic work on authoritarianism that introduced the concept and measurement via the F-scale (F for facism). Largely based in psychoanalytic theory, this study argued that authoritarianism was related to a set of traits developed as a result of childhood experience.

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                      • Altemeyer, B. 1981. Right-wing authoritarianism. Winnipeg: Univ. of Manitoba Press.

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                        Provides a reformulation of authoritarianism as right-wing authoritarianism (RWA) through measurement refinement and creation of the RWA scale.

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                        • Altemeyer, B. 1998. The other “authoritarian personality.” Advances in Experimental Social Psychology 30:47–91.

                          DOI: 10.1016/S0065-2601(08)60382-2Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                          Reviews the research on authoritarianism and related constructs such as Social Dominance Orientation, and describes the newer 1997 version of the Right-Wing Authoritarianism (RWA) scale.

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                          • Brown, R. 1965. The authoritarian personality and the organization of attitudes. In Social Psychology. Edited by R. Brown, 477–546. New York: Free Press.

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                            Provides a critical review of some of the original Adorno work on authoritarianism, examining measurement issues and considering the idea of the left-wing authoritarian.

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                            • Doty, R. M., B. E. Peterson, and D. G. Winter. 1991. Threat and authoritarianism in the United States, 1978–1987. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 61:629–640.

                              DOI: 10.1037/0022-3514.61.4.629Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                              Examination of the link between threat and authoritarianism over time using aggregate data and various social indicators of each.

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                              • Feldman, S., and K. Stenner. 1997. Perceived threat and authoritarianism. Political Psychology 18:741–770.

                                DOI: 10.1111/0162-895X.00077Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                Examines the link between threat and authoritarianism at the individual level, showing that threat is more likely to lead to authoritarianism for those with authoritarian predispositions.

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                                • Reifen Tagar, M., C. M. Federico, K. E. Lyons, S. Ludeke, and M. A. Koenig. 2014. Heralding the authoritarian? Orientation toward authority in early childhood. Psychological Science 25:883–892.

                                  DOI: 10.1177/0956797613516470Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                  Examines the link between parental authoritarianism and childhood behavior, finding support for the idea that authoritarian parents are more likely to produce children with similar attitudes and behavior.

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                                  Biopolitics

                                  Biopolitics is a subfield within political science focused on explaining political behavior via biology, genetics, and evolutionary theory. There is a growing body of work suggesting that political orientations (liberal versus conservative) are heritable and related to biological function. Alford and Hibbing 2008, Funk 2013, and Sidanius and Kurzban 2013 provide overviews of this work. Hatemi and McDermott 2011 is a recent edited volume that provides more in-depth consideration of a variety of topics. Alford, et al. 2005 examines the genetic underpinnings of political orientations. Oxley, et al. 2008 examines the link between physiology and political attitudes.

                                  Candidate Perception

                                  A central question in understanding elections and voting behavior has been to examine how people think about and process political candidates. With the rise of new media such as television and the Internet, it is now easier than ever to view photos and videos of political candidates, and research has increasingly looked at how people are processing information in this new environment. Other questions for research have included a focus on what traits are most important in determining candidate support, and how perceptions differ as a function of demographic features such as candidate gender and race. Krosnick and Kinder 1990 demonstrates the influence of priming on candidate evaluation. Caruso, et al. 2009 and Young, et al. 2014 examine how partisanship and attitudes influence visual representation of political candidates. Todorov, et al. 2005 and Hehman, et al. 2014 show that rapid processing of faces is related to electoral outcomes. Hehman, et al. 2011 examines the link between race, perceptions of Americanism, and perceptions of presidential performance.

                                  • Caruso, E. M., N. L. Mead, and E. Balcetis. 2009. Political partisanship influences perception of biracial candidates’ skin tone. PNAS 106:20168–20173.

                                    DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0905362106Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                    Examined how political partisanship influences visual representation of biracial political candidates, showing that people tended to perceive same-party candidates as lighter skinned.

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                                    • Hehman, E., C. M. Carpinella, K. L. Johnson, J. B. Leitner, and J. B. Freeman. 2014. Early processing of gendered facial cues predicts the electoral success of female politicians. Social Psychological and Personality Science 5:815–824.

                                      DOI: 10.1177/1948550614534701Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                      Examines the impact of gender prototypicality on electoral success for female candidates. Gender-atypical facial cues were related to decreased electoral success, especially in more politically conservative constituencies.

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                                      • Hehman, E., S. L. Gaertner, and J. F. Dovidio. 2011. Evaluations of presidential performance: Race, prejudice, and perceptions of Americanism. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology 47:430–435.

                                        DOI: 10.1016/j.jesp.2010.11.011Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                        Empirical work examining the impact of prejudice on perceptions of President Obama’s job performance, showing that prejudice predicted more negative evaluations of his performance and that this effect was mediated by how American Obama was perceived to be.

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                                        • Krosnick, J. A., and D. R. Kinder. 1990. Altering the foundations of support for the president through priming. American Political Science Review 84:497–512.

                                          DOI: 10.2307/1963531Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                          Demonstrates the importance of priming in terms of determining what will be most predictive of candidate evaluations, suggesting that news coverage can play an important role in influencing these evaluations.

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                                          • Todorov, A., A. N. Mandisodza, A. Goren, and C. C. Hall. 2005. Inferences of competence from faces predict election outcomes. Science 308:1623–1626.

                                            DOI: 10.1126/science.1110589Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                            Empirical work showing that judgments of competence from candidates’ faces predict election outcomes better than chance.

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                                            • Young, A. I., K. G. Ratner, and R. H. Fazio. 2014. Political attitudes bias the mental representation of a presidential candidate’s face. Psychological Science 25:503–510.

                                              DOI: 10.1177/0956797613510717Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                              Empirical work showing that attitudes can influence memory and interpretation of candidates’ faces. Using reverse-correlation image classification, this work showed that people with a positive attitude toward a presidential candidate selected a version of the candidate’s face that was subsequently rated as more trustworthy by independent judges.

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                                              Cognition

                                              Political psychologists have become increasingly interested in examining the information processing underlying political decision making, and have drawn inspiration from the social cognition tradition in social psychology. Work in political cognition has dealt with similar issues, such as the use of heuristics, the role of automatic versus controlled processing. Over time, this has also resulted in development of new paradigms to measure information processing over time, and in more externally valid experimental contexts. McGraw 2000 provides an overview of how the social cognition tradition has influenced political psychology, and Taber and Young 2013 reviews the literature in this area of research in a handbook chapter. Tetlock 1984 examines the link between ideology and cognitive style. Lau and Redlawsk 2001 examines whether political sophistication influences the correct use of heuristics in political decision making. Lau and Redlawsk 2006 describes a series of experiments examining information processes in voter decision making. Mitchell 2012 uses a panel experiment to investigate information processing effects over time. Redlawsk, et al. 2010 finds evidence for an affective tipping point, when people are more likely to abandon motivated reasoning in favor of more objective information processing.

                                              Emotion

                                              Research in political psychology has increasingly tried to incorporate social psychological theory and research into models of how emotion influences political behavior. Research on emotion in politics has examined the relative impact of cognition versus emotion on political decisions and behavior, the role of positive versus negative emotions, and more recently, the impact of specific emotions (e.g., threat, anxiety, anger) on political behavior. Brader and Marcus 2013 provides a review of this area of research. Marcus, et al. 2000 provides an overview of one of the most influential theories of emotion and politics—Affective Intelligence Theory. MacKuen, et al. 2010 provides an empirical test of this theory. Brader 2006 examines the role of emotion in political advertising. Lodge and Taber 2005 argues that affect is automatically attached to political information. Huddy, et al. 2005 and Haas and Cunningham 2014 examine the role of specific emotions or types of affect. Neuman, et al. 2007 is a recent edited volume on the topic of emotion and politics.

                                              • Brader, T. 2006. Campaigning for hearts and minds: How emotional appeals in political ads work. Chicago: Univ. of Chicago Press.

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                                                Examines the role of emotion in political advertising, showing that emotion can have a big impact on how people respond to ads during a campaign.

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                                                • Brader, T., and G. E. Marcus. 2013. Emotion and political psychology. In The Oxford handbook of political psychology. 2d ed. Edited by L. Huddy, D. O. Sears, and J. S. Levy, 165–204. New York: Oxford Univ. Press.

                                                  DOI: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199760107.013.0006Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                  Provides an overview of theoretical perspectives on emotion, the role of specific emotions, consequences for political behavior, and directions for future work.

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                                                  • Haas, I. J., and W. A. Cunningham. 2014. The uncertainty paradox: Perceived threat moderates the effect of uncertainty on political tolerance. Political Psychology 35:291–302.

                                                    DOI: 10.1111/pops.12035Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                    Recent article that examines the impact of uncertainty and threat on tolerance for opposing viewpoints, showing that uncertainty can increase tolerance but is less likely to do so in threatening contexts.

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                                                    • Huddy, L., S. Feldman, and C. Taber. 2005. Threat, anxiety, and support of antiterrorism policies. American Journal of Political Science 49:593–608.

                                                      DOI: 10.1111/j.1540-5907.2005.00144.xSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                      Empirical paper showing that threat and anxiety have different impacts on foreign policy issues. Threat increases support for retaliation, whereas anxiety makes people more hesitant to support military action.

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                                                      • Lodge, M., and C. S. Taber. 2005. The automaticity of affect for political leaders, groups, and issues: An experimental test of the hot cognition hypothesis. Political Psychology 26:455–482.

                                                        DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9221.2005.00426.xSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                        Empirical examination of the “hot cognition” hypothesis, or the idea that affective responses to political issues are automatic. Shows that affectively similar concepts are evaluated more quickly than affectively incongruent concepts.

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                                                        • MacKuen, M., J. Wolak, L. Keele, and G. E. Marcus. 2010. Civic engagements: Resolute partisanship or reflective deliberation. American Journal of Political Science 54:440–458.

                                                          DOI: 10.1111/j.1540-5907.2010.00440.xSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                          Empirical paper examining the influence of anxiety and aversion on political deliberation. Aversion is more likely to lead to partisanship, whereas anxiety can promote deliberation.

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                                                          • Marcus, G. E., W. R. Neuman, and M. MacKuen. 2000. Affective intelligence and political judgment. Chicago: Univ. of Chicago Press.

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                                                            Provides an overview of Affective Intelligence Theory—one perspective on the role of emotion in politics that has been influential in political science.

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                                                            • Neuman, W. R., G. E. Marcus, A. Crigler, and M. MacKuen, eds. 2007. The affect effect: Dynamics of emotion in political thinking and behavior. Chicago: Univ. of Chicago Press.

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                                                              Edited volume that addresses the role of emotion in politics at both the micro and the macro level. Specific chapters address the impact of various emotions on politics, as well as the impact of different interdisciplinary perspectives.

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                                                              Identity

                                                              Research on political identity in political psychology has been inspired by classic work on social identity from social psychology. Scholars have examined how social identity can be used to understand different types of political identification, such as partisanship, national identity, patriotism, and nationalism. Tajfel and Turner 1986 is a classic piece on social identity theory, which has been the basis for much of the later work in political psychology. Brewer 2001 discusses different types of social identity and the implications of each for political identity, and Huddy 2001 discusses some of the challenges in applying social psychological work on identity to politics. Huddy 2013 provides a recent overview of work in this area. Huddy and Khatib 2007 develops a new measure of national identity. Theiss-Morse 2009 examines the boundaries of national identity and implications for individuals not included in the group.

                                                              • Brewer, M. B. 2001. The many faces of social identity: Implications for political psychology. Political Psychology 22:115–125.

                                                                DOI: 10.1111/0162-895X.00229Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                Provides an overview of different theoretical perspectives on social identity, discussing person-based identities, relational identities, group-based identities, and collective identities, along with the implications of each of these for political psychology.

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                                                                • Huddy, L. 2001. From social to political identity: A critical examination of social identity theory. Political Psychology 22:127–156.

                                                                  DOI: 10.1111/0162-895X.00230Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                  Discusses the application of Social Identity Theory to politics, discussing some of the interdisciplinary challenges that have limited work in this area and offering suggestions for future work.

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                                                                  • Huddy, L. 2013. From group identity to political cohesion and commitment. In The Oxford handbook of political psychology. 2d ed. Edited by L. Huddy, D. O. Sears, and J. S. Levy, 737–773. New York: Oxford Univ. Press.

                                                                    DOI: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199760107.013.0023Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                    Examines the role of social identity in political behavior, including discussion of issues such as partisanship and patriotism. Focuses on development of political identity and understanding factors that strengthen these identities and increase cohesion within groups.

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                                                                    • Huddy, L., and N. Khatib. 2007. American patriotism, national identity, and political involvement. American Journal of Political Science 51:63–77.

                                                                      DOI: 10.1111/j.1540-5907.2007.00237.xSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                      Describes development of a new measure of national identity based in social identity theory, and shows empirical evidence that this construct can be differentiated from other related concepts such as patriotism and nationalism.

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                                                                      • Tajfel, H., and J. C. Turner. 1986. The social identity theory of intergroup behavior. In Psychology of Intergroup Relations. Edited by F. Worchel and W. G. Austin, 7–24. Chicago: Nelson-Hall.

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                                                                        This classic work provides an overview of social identity theory, arguing that people can think about themselves as individuals or as members of a group and that this has important implications for understanding human behavior.

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                                                                        • Theiss-Morse, E. 2009. Who counts as an American? The boundaries of national identity. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge Univ. Press.

                                                                          DOI: 10.1017/CBO9780511750717Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                          Examines the concept of national identity and whether it is good or bad for democracy. While strong identity can lead Americans to help others, decisions about who counts as an American limit the degree to which everyone benefits.

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                                                                          Ideology

                                                                          Over the years, scholars have debated the importance of ideology and argued about how best to define the concept. There are ongoing arguments about whether ideology is best thought of as a unidimensional concept (typically measured with a bipolar scale ranging from liberal to conservative), or a multidimensional concept (for which there have been multiple theoretical models proposed). Overall, the current zeitgeist seems to indicate increased interest in studying political ideology and increased value placed on its importance for understanding a range of social and political behavior. Feldman 2013 provides an overview of multiple perspectives on political ideology within political psychology. Converse 1964 is a classic piece that deals with the issue of ideological constraint, arguing that many people do not really have a coherent ideology. Conover and Feldman 1981 argues in favor of a more symbolic, multidimensional representation of political ideology. Jost 2006; Jost, et al. 2009; and Jost, et al. 2003 argue for the importance of the unidimensional conceptualization of ideology, explaining ideological differences as a function of underlying psychological factors and motivation. Janoff-Bulman 2009 also argues that political ideology is related to psychological motivation but focuses specifically on approach versus avoidance motivation. Hibbing, et al. 2014 suggests that liberals and conservatives can be differentiated on the basis of their sensitivity and responsiveness to negatively valenced information.

                                                                          • Conover, P. J., and S. Feldman. 1981. The origins and meaning of liberal-conservative self-identification. American Journal of Political Science 25:617–645.

                                                                            DOI: 10.2307/2110756Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                            Examines the meaning of liberal and conservative self-identifications, arguing that ideology may be a multidimensional construct and is more symbolic than sometimes assumed. Ideology can be explained through a combination of symbolic meaning variables, issue positions, and evaluations of ideological groups.

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                                                                            • Converse, P. E. 1964. The nature of belief systems in mass publics. In Ideology and Discontent. Edited by D. E. Apter, 206–226. New York: Free Press.

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                                                                              Classic piece that argues for the importance of constraint (logical, psychological, and social) in belief systems. Suggests that most people do not meet these standards and should not be considered to be ideologues.

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                                                                              • Feldman, S. 2013. Political ideology. In The Oxford handbook of political psychology. 2d ed. Edited by L. Huddy, D. O. Sears, and J. S. Levy, 591–626. New York: Oxford Univ. Press.

                                                                                DOI: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199760107.001.0001Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                This chapter examines the structure and antecedents of political ideology, arguing for a multidimensional structure. Focuses on values, personality, biology, and genetics as possible underpinnings of ideology and suggests ways to integrate these theoretical perspectives.

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                                                                                • Hibbing, J. R., K. B. Smith, and J. R. Alford. 2014. Differences in negativity bias underlie variations in political ideology. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 37:297–307.

                                                                                  DOI: 10.1017/S0140525X13001192Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                  Attempts to explain many of the differences between liberals and conservatives as a function of differential sensitivity to negatively valenced information. Conservatives are thought to be more sensitive to an array of negative information than liberals.

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                                                                                  • Janoff-Bulman, R. 2009. To provide or protect: Motivational bases of political liberalism and conservatism. Psychological Inquiry 20:120–128.

                                                                                    DOI: 10.1080/10478400903028581Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                    Offers a motivational theory of ideology that illustrates links between liberals with approach motivation and conservatives with avoidance motivation. Helps to explain why liberals and conservatives may view group membership and responsibility in different ways.

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                                                                                    • Jost, J. T. 2006. The end of the end of ideology. American Psychologist 61:651–670.

                                                                                      DOI: 10.1037/0003-066X.61.7.651Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                      Argues that ideology is an important driver of political behavior and that earlier calls to abandon the study of ideology were misguided. Discusses differences between left-right orientations, suggesting that this distinction is essential for understanding political thought.

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                                                                                      • Jost, J. T., C. M. Federico, and J. L. Napier. 2009. Political ideology: Its structure, functions, and elective affinities. Annual Review of Psychology 60:307–337.

                                                                                        DOI: 10.1146/annurev.psych.60.110707.163600Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                        This review of work on political ideology describes historical conceptions of ideology, unidimensional versus multidimensional conceptualizations, and the psychological and motivational origins and functions of ideology. Consequences for political evaluation and system justification are discussed.

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                                                                                        • Jost, J. T., J. Glaser, A. W. Kruglanski, and F. J. Sulloway. 2003. Political conservatism as motivated social cognition. Psychological Bulletin 129:339–375.

                                                                                          DOI: 10.1037/0033-2909.129.3.339Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                          Proposes a motivational theory of ideology linking political conservatism with a variety of psychological variables, such as increased needs for order, structure, and closure, and fear of threat and decreased openness to experience and tolerance of uncertainty.

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                                                                                          Intergroup Conflict

                                                                                          Research on intergroup conflict has often applied work from social psychology to real-world conflicts, examining important issues in the study of international relations. This work has addressed conflict and conflict resolution, the role of emotion in international relations, and addressed the issue of terrorism. There are a number of chapters in the new Handbook of Political Psychology that address issues in international relations from the perspective of political psychology, including Bar-Tal and Halperin 2013; Fisher, et al. 2013; and Herrmann 2013. Bar-Tal, et al. 2007 examines the role of emotion in intergroup conflict. Crenshaw 1986 and Kruglanski and Fishman 2009 examine individual- and group-level factors that contribute to terrorism.

                                                                                          • Bar-Tal, D., and E. Halperin. 2013. The psychology of intractable conflicts: Eruption, escalation, and peacemaking. In The Oxford handbook of political psychology. 2d ed. Edited by L. Huddy, D. O. Sears, and J. S. Levy, 923–956. New York: Oxford Univ. Press.

                                                                                            DOI: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199760107.001.0001Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                            This chapter focuses on understanding conflicts that are prolonged and difficult to resolve, examining how beliefs, attitudes, and emotions impact behavior in these situations.

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                                                                                            • Bar-Tal, D., E. Halperin, and J. de Rivera. 2007. Collective emotions in conflict situations: Societal implications. Journal of Social Issues 63:441–460.

                                                                                              DOI: 10.1111/j.1540-4560.2007.00518.xSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                              Provides an overview of the role of specific emotions in conflict situations, including discussion of the impact of fear, hatred, hope, and security.

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                                                                                              • Crenshaw, M. 1986. The psychology of political terrorism. In Political Psychology: Contemporary Problems and Issues. Edited by M. Hermann, 379–413. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

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                                                                                                Examines the psychological factors that contribute to individual decisions to participate in terrorism and how people respond to terrorism. Argues that people drawn to terrorism may be motivated by frustrated idealism and group pressure.

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                                                                                                • Fisher, R. J., H. C. Kelman, and S. A. Nan. 2013. Conflict analysis and resolution. In The Oxford handbook of political psychology. 2d ed. Edited by L. Huddy, D. O. Sears, and J. S. Levy, 489–524. New York: Oxford Univ. Press.

                                                                                                  DOI: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199760107.001.0001Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                  This chapter deals with issues related to conflict analysis and resolution through the theoretical perspective of interactive conflict resolution, viewing conflicts as a product of identity and group processes. Also offers suggestions for practitioners working in this area.

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                                                                                                  • Herrmann, R. K. 2013. Perceptions and image theory in international relations. In The oxford handbook of political psychology. 2d ed. Edited by L. Huddy, D. O. Sears, and J. S. Levy, 334–363. New York: Oxford Univ. Press.

                                                                                                    DOI: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199760107.001.0001Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                    Argues for the importance of understanding subjective perceptions in international relations from the perspective of image theory.

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                                                                                                    • Kruglanski, A. W., and S. Fishman. 2009. Psychological factors in terrorism and counterterrorism: Individual, group, and organizational levels of analysis. Social Issues and Policy Review 3:1–44.

                                                                                                      DOI: 10.1111/j.1751-2409.2009.01009.xSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                      Examines the impact of a variety of issues on terrorism and counterterrorism, including factors like personality and motivation, social influence and indoctrination, and training and logistics. Considers the implication of these findings for the reduction of terrorism.

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                                                                                                      Morality

                                                                                                      Research on morality has typically focused on moral development, thinking of morality as something that is learned and develops across the lifespan. More recent work in psychology and cognitive neuroscience has begun to focus on the idea that morality is largely driven by emotion and intuition. Much of this work has addressed the process of moral decision making, examining how moral issues are evaluated differently from non-moral issues. Greene and Haidt 2002 and Haidt 2001 argue for the role of emotion and intuition in morality. Haidt 2007 and Haidt 2012 present a theory of morality that focuses on the role of five specific moral intuitions. Helzer and Pizarro 2011 examines the link between the emotion of disgust and moral judgment. Rozin 1999 discusses the process by which issues become moralized, and Skitka 2010 examines the consequences of attitudes held with strong moral conviction (“moral mandates”). Finally, Van Bavel, et al. 2012 examines the extent to which moral evaluation is flexible.

                                                                                                      • Greene, J. D., and J. Haidt. 2002. How (and where) does moral judgment work? Trends in Cognitive Sciences 6:517–523.

                                                                                                        DOI: 10.1016/S1364-6613(02)02011-9Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                        Provides an overview of morality research from the perspective of psychology and cognitive neuroscience, arguing for the impact of affect, emotion, and intuition. Also discusses possible neural underpinnings of morality based on the cognitive neuroscience work.

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                                                                                                        • Haidt, J. 2001. The emotional dog and its rational tail: A social intuitionist approach to moral judgment. Psychological Review 108:814–834.

                                                                                                          DOI: 10.1037/0033-295X.108.4.814Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                          Describes the social intuitionist model of morality, which proposes that morality is driven more by intuition than reason, and integrates this model with recent work from a variety of perspectives.

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                                                                                                          • Haidt, J. 2007. The new synthesis in moral psychology. Science 316:998–1002.

                                                                                                            DOI: 10.1126/science.1137651Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                            Discusses important principles in the study of morality, arguing that research on morality should focus on more than harm and fairness and focus on collective and religious aspects of morality as well.

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                                                                                                            • Haidt, J. 2012. The righteous mind: Why good people are divided by politics and religion. Pantheon.

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                                                                                                              Provides an overview of Moral Foundations Theory, discussing the role of intuition in moral judgment. Focuses mainly on five dimensions of morality: harm, fairness, loyalty, authority, and purity.

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                                                                                                              • Helzer, E. G., and D. A. Pizarro. 2011. Dirty liberals! Reminders of physical cleanliness influence moral and political attitudes. Psychological Science 22:517–522.

                                                                                                                DOI: 10.1177/0956797611402514Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                Empirical work demonstrating the link between disgust, moral reasoning, and political attitudes. Physical reminders of contamination increased conservatism and desire to punish individuals who violated moral principles.

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                                                                                                                • Rozin, P. 1999. The process of moralization. Psychological Science 10:218–221.

                                                                                                                  DOI: 10.1111/1467-9280.00139Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                  Provides an overview of how social and political issues transform from preferences to moral issues, and discusses the implications of this process.

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                                                                                                                  • Skitka, L. J. 2010. The psychology of moral conviction. Social and Personality Psychology Compass 4:267–281.

                                                                                                                    DOI: 10.1111/j.1751-9004.2010.00254.xSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                    Reviews research on moral conviction, arguing that moral mandates are qualitatively distinct from other types of attitudes. Discusses the consequences of holding attitudes with strong moral conviction, arguing for both normatively desirable and undesirable outcomes.

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                                                                                                                    • Van Bavel, J. J., D. J. Packer, I. J. Haas, and W. A. Cunningham. 2012. The importance of moral construal: Moral versus non-moral construal elicits faster, more extreme, universal evaluations of the same actions. PLoS One 7:e48693.

                                                                                                                      DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0048693Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                      Empirical paper examining the degree to which moral evaluation is flexible. Shows that when issues are construed as moral, evaluations are faster, more extreme, and more universal.

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                                                                                                                      Neuroscience

                                                                                                                      In 2003 a special issue of the journal Political Psychology focused on the relationship between political science and cognitive neuroscience, arguing that there was reason to pursue work in the area of political neuroscience (or neuropolitics). Since then, the number of published papers in the field of political neuroscience has been expanding, although this area is still new and relatively unexplored. Most work in this area has used neuroscientific methods (fMRI, EEG) to study questions of interest to political psychologists, addressing political evaluation, political cognition, emotion, race, and individual differences. Cacioppo and Visser 2003 and Lieberman, et al. 2003 provide early discussions of how political science and cognitive neuroscience might be successfully linked. Theodoridis and Nelson 2012 points out some of the difficulties in doing this type of interdisciplinary work and urge skeptics to be patient. Jost, et al. 2014 provides a recent review of work in political neuroscience. Gozzi, et al. 2010; Spezio, et al. 2008; and Tusche, et al. 2013 are good examples of empirical work in this area utilizing fMRI.

                                                                                                                      • Cacioppo, J. T., and P. S. Visser. 2003. Political psychology and social neuroscience: Strange bedfellows or comrades in arms? Political Psychology 24:647–656.

                                                                                                                        DOI: 10.1046/j.1467-9221.2003.00345.xSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                        Introduction to the special issue on neuroscience and political psychology. Discusses challenges related to integrating work across levels of analysis, and some important principles for researchers to be aware of.

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                                                                                                                        • Gozzi, M., G. Zamboni, F. Krueger, and J. Grafman. 2010. Interest in politics modulates neural activity in the amygdala and ventral striatum. Human Brain Mapping 31:1763–1771.

                                                                                                                          DOI: 10.1002/hbm.20976Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                          fMRI study showing that individuals with a strong interest in politics experience greater activation in amygdala and ventral striatum when reading statements they agreed with.

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                                                                                                                          • Jost, J. T., H. H. Nam, D. M. Amodio, and J. J. Van Bavel. 2014. Political neuroscience: The beginning of a beautiful friendship. Advances in Political Psychology 35:3–42.

                                                                                                                            DOI: 10.1111/pops.12162Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                            Review of research in the area of political neuroscience, focusing on racial prejudice and intergroup relations, partisan bias and motivated social cognition, left-right ideological differences, and the structure of political attitudes.

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                                                                                                                            • Lieberman, M. D., D. Schreiber, and K. N. Ochsner. 2003. Is political cognition like riding a bicycle? How cognitive neuroscience can inform research on political thinking. Political Psychology 24:681–704.

                                                                                                                              DOI: 10.1046/j.1467-9221.2003.00347.xSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                              Describes how cognitive neuroscience can help inform research on political attitudes and cognition, and provides an overview of how neuroimaging methods can be used to study political cognition.

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                                                                                                                              • Spezio, M. L., A. Rangel, R. M. Alvarez, J. P. O’Doherty, K. Mattes, A. Todorov, H. Kim, and R. Adolphs. 2008. A neural basis for the effect of candidate appearance on election outcomes. Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience 3:344–352.

                                                                                                                                DOI: 10.1093/scan/nsn040Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                                fMRI study showing that greater insula and anterior cingulate activation to disliked candidates was associated with an increased likelihood of losing elections. Argues that this activation is linked to perceptions of threat.

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                                                                                                                                • Theodoridis, A. G., and A. J. Nelson. 2012. Of BOLD claims and excessive fears: A call for caution and patience regarding political neuroscience. Political Psychology 33:27–43.

                                                                                                                                  DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9221.2011.00860.xSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                                  Discusses how political neuroscience work has been received by political psychologists and political scientists, arguing that researchers should be careful not to overstate conclusions and that observers of this work should be patient as the field is in its early stages.

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                                                                                                                                  • Tusche, A., T. Kahnt, D. Wisniewski, and J. D. Haynes. 2013. Automatic processing of political preferences in the human brain. NeuroImage 72:174–182.

                                                                                                                                    DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2013.01.020Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                                    fMRI study that showed neural activation to the faces of political candidates, even when those faces were unattended or irrelevant to the task. Consistent with theories that suggest political information is automatically evaluated.

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                                                                                                                                    Personality

                                                                                                                                    Political psychology work on personality began with an attempt to understand the personality profiles of leaders, often through psychoanalytic or content analysis. While this perspective is still used, more recent work has focused on quantitative analysis and measurement of traits and values and examination of the links between these individual differences and various types of political behavior. Winter 2013 provides an overview of the first approach (psychobiography and content analysis), whereas Caprara and Vecchione 2013 discusses some of the newer approaches to studying personality and politics. Caprara, et al. 2006 is an empirical examination of the link between values, traits, and political behavior. Mondak 2010 and Mondak, et al. 2010 also focus on the link between personality traits and political behavior, focusing primarily on the Big Five personality traits. Winter 1987 is an example of how content analysis has been used to investigate the personality of political leaders.

                                                                                                                                    • Caprara, G. V., S. Schwartz, C. Capanna, M. Vecchione, and C. Barbaranelli. 2006. Personality and politics: Values, traits, and political choice. Political Psychology 27:1–28.

                                                                                                                                      DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9221.2006.00447.xSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                                      This work examines the relative impact of values and personality traits on political leanings and voting behavior. Both values and traits are related to political preferences, but values seem to have a larger impact on behavior.

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                                                                                                                                      • Caprara, G. V., and M. Vecchione. 2013. Personality approaches to political behavior. In The Oxford handbook of political psychology. 2d ed. Edited by L. Huddy, D. O. Sears, and J. S. Levy, 23–58. New York: Oxford Univ. Press.

                                                                                                                                        DOI: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199760107.001.0001Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                                        Examines the link between personality and political behavior, arguing that traits, values, and beliefs about the self may help explain political preferences.

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                                                                                                                                        • Mondak, J. J. 2010. Personality and the foundations of political behavior. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge Univ. Press.

                                                                                                                                          DOI: 10.1017/CBO9780511761515Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                                          Empirical examination of the link between the Big Five personality traits—openness, contentiousness, extraversion, agreeableness, neuroticism—and political behavior.

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                                                                                                                                          • Mondak, J. J., M. V. Hibbing, D. Canache, M. A. Seligson, and M. R. Anderson. 2010. Personality and civic engagement: An integrative framework for the study of trait effects on political behavior. American Political Science Review 104:85–110.

                                                                                                                                            DOI: 10.1017/S0003055409990359Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                                            Examines the link between personality traits and political behavior, discussing links between personality and biology, as well as situational influences and person-situation interaction effects.

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                                                                                                                                            • Winter, D. G. 1987. Leader appeal, leader performance, and the motive profiles of leaders and followers: A study of American presidents and elections. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 52:196–202.

                                                                                                                                              DOI: 10.1037/0022-3514.52.1.196Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                                              Used content analysis of presidential speeches to estimate the motive profiles of presidents in terms of their focus on achievement, affiliation, and power. Discusses implications for how we should understand and think about “great” presidents, and how this approach can be integrated with other attempts to understand presidential personality.

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                                                                                                                                              • Winter, D. G. 2013. Personality profiles of political elites. In The Oxford handbook of political psychology. 2d ed. Edited by L. Huddy, D. O. Sears, and J. S. Levy, 423–458. New York: Oxford Univ. Press.

                                                                                                                                                DOI: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199760107.001.0001Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                                                Discusses strategies for examining personality of political elites, such as psychobiography and text analysis, and examines the benefits and limitations of this type of work.

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                                                                                                                                                Stereotyping, Prejudice, and Discrimination

                                                                                                                                                Political psychologists have been especially interested in the role that race plays in political behavior. Much of the focus has been on understanding how the role of race in American politics has changed over time. This has led to the development of influential theories and perspectives such as symbolic racism and Social Dominance Theory. Kinder 2013 provides an overview of work in the area of race and politics. Bobo 1988 discusses changes in racial attitudes over time. Kinder and Sears 1981 examines the relative impact of realistic threat and symbolic prejudice on political behavior. Sears 1988 provides a theoretical overview of the symbolic racism perspective. Sidanius and Pratto 2001 introduces Social Dominance Theory and Pratto, et al. 1994 discusses a related individual difference construct—social dominance orientation. Jost and Thompson 2000 reexamines social dominance orientation, providing an alternate version of the scale.

                                                                                                                                                • Bobo, L. 1988. Group conflict, prejudice, and the paradox of contemporary racial attitudes. In Eliminating racism: Profiles in controversy. Edited by P. A. Katz and D. A. Taylor, 85–116. New York: Plenum.

                                                                                                                                                  DOI: 10.1007/978-1-4899-0818-6Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                                                  Describes changes in racial attitudes over time, arguing that evidence of a racial divide is still present in areas like residential segregation and economic inequality. Points out that while many Americans support racial equality in the abstract, they are hesitant to make the changes necessary to achieve that goal.

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                                                                                                                                                  • Jost, J. T., and E. P. Thompson. 2000. Group-based dominance and opposition to equality as independent predictors of self-esteem, ethnocentrism, and social policy attitudes among African Americans and European Americans. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology 36:209–232.

                                                                                                                                                    DOI: 10.1006/jesp.1999.1403Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                                                    Argues that the Social Dominance Orientation Scale should be conceptualized as multidimensional rather than unidimensional—consisting of subfactors that represent opposition to equality and group-based dominance.

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                                                                                                                                                    • Kinder, D. R. 2013. Prejudice and politics. In The Oxford handbook of political psychology. 2d ed. Edited by L. Huddy, D. O. Sears, and J. S. Levy, 812–851. New York: Oxford Univ. Press.

                                                                                                                                                      DOI: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199760107.001.0001Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                                                      Provides an overview of the role of race and prejudice in politics, examining different types of prejudice and why some people may be more predisposed toward prejudice than others.

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                                                                                                                                                      • Kinder, D. R., and D. O. Sears. 1981. Prejudice and politics: Symbolic racism versus racial threats to the good life. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 40:414–431.

                                                                                                                                                        DOI: 10.1037/0022-3514.40.3.414Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                                                        Examines the relative impact of racial threats (realistic group conflict theory) and abstract, moral resentment of blacks (symbolic racism) on voting decisions. Antiblack voting behavior was largely driven by symbolic racism.

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                                                                                                                                                        • Pratto, F., J. Sidanius, L. M. Stallworth, and B. F. Malle. 1994. Social dominance orientation: A personality variable predicting social and political attitudes. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 67:741–763.

                                                                                                                                                          DOI: 10.1037/0022-3514.67.4.741Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                                                          Introduces the social dominance orientation (SDO) individual difference construct, and examines how SDO relates to gender, social roles, ideological beliefs, and political policies.

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                                                                                                                                                          • Sears, D. O. 1988. Symbolic racism. In Eliminating racism: Profiles in controversy. Edited by P. A. Katz and D. A. Taylor, 53–84. New York: Plenum.

                                                                                                                                                            DOI: 10.1007/978-1-4899-0818-6Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                                                            Provides an overview of the symbolic racism approach to understanding prejudice. While overt racism has diminished over time, Sears argues prejudice toward Blacks in America has become more symbolic and abstract but still has a pervasive impact on American political behavior.

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                                                                                                                                                            • Sidanius, J., and F. Pratto. 2001. Social dominance: An intergroup theory of social hierarchy and oppression. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge Univ. Press.

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                                                                                                                                                              Provides an overview of Social Dominance Theory, arguing that societies tend to be structured as group-based social hierarchies. They describe how social hierarchies are maintained and how they contribute to group conflict and oppression.

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                                                                                                                                                              System Justification Theory

                                                                                                                                                              Beliefs about equality and a preference for the status quo are thought to be two key components of ideological belief systems. Interestingly, research has shown that members of both advantaged and disadvantaged groups appear to prefer the status quo and show preferences for inequality. Lane 1959 is an early examination of beliefs about equality among individuals low in socioeconomic status. Jost and Banaji 1994 examines the ways in which stereotypes can be used to justify the status quo. Jost, et al. 2004 and Jost and Hunyady 2005 provide overviews of system justification theory—the idea that people tend to prefer and maintain the status quo, even when it preserves inequality. Johnson and Fujita 2012 examines some of the conditions under which people are likely to pursue system change over system justification.

                                                                                                                                                              • Johnson, I. R., and K. Fujita. 2012. Change we can believe in: Using perceptions of changeability to promote system-change motives over system-justification motives in information search. Psychological Science 23:133–140.

                                                                                                                                                                DOI: 10.1177/0956797611423670Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                                                                Examines the limits of system justification motives, demonstrating that people are more likely to demonstrate system change motivation when the system is perceived as changeable.

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                                                                                                                                                                • Jost, J. T., and M. R. Banaji. 1994. The role of stereotyping in system-justification and the production of false consciousness. British Journal of Social Psychology 33:1–27.

                                                                                                                                                                  DOI: 10.1111/j.2044-8309.1994.tb01008.xSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                                                                  Describes various functions of stereotypes, including ego justification, group justification, and system justification.

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                                                                                                                                                                  • Jost, J. T., M. R. Banaji, and B. A. Nosek. 2004. A decade of system justification theory: Accumulated evidence of conscious and unconscious bolstering of the status quo. Political Psychology 25:881–920.

                                                                                                                                                                    DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9221.2004.00402.xSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                                                                    Reviews ten years of research on system justification theory, arguing that people are motivated to justify the existing social order and showing support for a number of related hypotheses.

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                                                                                                                                                                    • Jost, J. T., and O. Hunyady. 2005. Antecedents and consequences of system-justifying ideologies. Current Directions in Psychological Science 14:260–265.

                                                                                                                                                                      DOI: 10.1111/j.0963-7214.2005.00377.xSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                                                                      Provides an overview of dispositional and situational antecedents of system justification. Also discusses how the consequences differ for members of advantaged versus disadvantaged groups and examines the consequences for society as a whole.

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                                                                                                                                                                      • Lane, R. E. 1959. The fear of equality. American Political Science Review 53:35–51.

                                                                                                                                                                        DOI: 10.2307/1951729Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                                                                        Examines beliefs about equality and the counterintuitive idea that people of lower socioeconomic status may not really want economic equality. Argues that people tend to rationalize their current position and are afraid of change.

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