Have Americans’ Attitudes Become More Polarized? – an Update
AbstractObjective: I update the analysis of attitudinal polarization originally presented in DiMaggio, Evans and Bryson (DEB) (1996) by using newly available years of survey data. Method: Like DEB, I derive aggregate distributional parameters for social groups in each year of the surveys, and then regress the year of the surveys on each parameter. Results: As in DEB’s original paper, there is little evidence of general polarization in attitudes between the early 1970s and today. However, while DEB found some evidence that polarization in the public may be the result of polarization in our political system, with the additional years of data this conclusion is inescapable. Conclusions: While political scientists have recently found polarization among our elected officials on economic issues, it seems clear that members of the public who are involved with politics are becoming polarized on moral issues. Political scientists should follow up on this research to see not only if elected officials are polarized on these issues, but the causal direction of the link between officials and the public.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Center for Arts and Cultural Policy Studies. in its series Working Papers with number 40.
Date of creation: May 2002
Date of revision:
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- Z11 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economics of the Arts and Literature
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Blog mentionsAs found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
- How Many Americas?
by Mark Thoma in Economist's View on 2008-06-18 07:15:00
- Nixonland: One, Two, or Many Americas?
by Lane Kenworthy in Consider the Evidence on 2008-06-18 03:37:02
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