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Overview

Political communication scholars aim to understand the effect of messages on political attitudes and behavior. Past scholarship has identified three sources of influence in forming attitudes and behavior: affective, cognitive, and personality factors. While much attention has been paid to the impact of each single factor, little research has attempted to integrate them. Using the Affective Intelligence model as a theoretical point of departure (Marcus, & MacKuen, 1993; Marcus et al., 2000), this dissertation explored the simultaneous---and, in some cases, interactive relationships---between these attitudinal and behavioral influences.;An experiment was conducted to answer three questions: first, do the causal claims made by Marcus and colleagues regarding the impact of emotion on political attitudes and behavior hold-up outside the realm of survey research? Second, what role does cognitive appraisals of messages play in the political persuasion process? Finally, does political efficacy moderate the relationships between induced emotional response, cognitive appraisals of messages, and political attitudes and behavior? Alternatively stated, does political efficacy link these factors together?;The results of this study should be carefully interpreted as the causal instrument underlying manipulated attitudes was not transparent. The desired experimental manipulation---induced anxiety---was not unidimensional. While inductions did induce negative affect, they simultaneously induced positive affect. Within the confines of this document, this result is discussed at length and numerous possible explanations are offered.;Structural equation modeling indicated that affect had a small impact on political attitudes and behavior. Likewise, the impact of cognitive appraisals of messages on attitudes and behavior was small. Alternatively, internal efficacy had a substantial main effect---not an interactive effect---on political attitudes and behavior.;In summary, the results demonstrated the power of personality in predicting political attitudes and behavior. By trait, some individuals are more politically efficacious than others. Those with higher levels of internal efficacy tended to identify experimental messages as relevant to the attitudes they held, indicating that confidence in one's ability to comprehend politics and understand political happenings leads to identifying message content as applicable or appropriate. Additionally, these same individuals were likely to seek out more information about politics.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781243645401
  • Publisher: BiblioLabsII
  • Publication date: 9/6/2011
  • Pages: 206
  • Product dimensions: 8.00 (w) x 10.00 (h) x 0.54 (d)

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