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Reasoning and Choice
Explorations in Political Psychology
by Paul M. Sniderman Richard A. Brody Phillip E. Tetlock James H. Kuklinski Dennis Chong

RRP €28.35

Reasoning and Choice
Explorations in Political Psychology
by Author Name Paul M. Sniderman, Richard A. Brody, Phillip E. Tetlock, James H. Kuklinski, Dennis Chong

Book details for title
List Price:28.35
Format: Paperback, 228 x 152 x 18mm, 324pp
Publication date: 30 Jul 1993
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN-13: 9780521407700


Drawing on a multitude of data sets and building on analyses carried out over more than a decade, this book offers a major new theoretical explanation of how ordinary citizens figure out what they favour and oppose politically. Reacting against the conventional wisdom, which stresses how little attention the general public pays to political issues and the lack of consistency in their opinions, the studies presented in this book redirect attention to the processes of reasoning that can be discerned when people are confronted with choices about political issues. These studies demonstrate that ordinary people are in fact capable of reasoning dependably about political issues by the use of judgmental heuristics, even if they have only a limited knowledge of politics and of specific issues.


'In sum this is a didactically, theoretically and methodologically impressive report on an important research project, scrupulously conducted over a number of years by a powerful group of scholars with a wide range of skills. It is now required reading for all who work on voting behaviour and/or political attitudes.' Michael Laver, Political Studies


List of tables and figures; Preface; 1. Introduction: major themes; 2. The role of heuristics in political reasoning: a theory sketch; 3. Values under pressure: AIDS and civil liberties; 4. The principle-policy puzzle: the paradox of American racial attitudes; 5. Reasoning chains; 6. The likability heuristic; 7. Democratic values and mass publics; 8. Ideological reasoning; 9. Information and electoral choice; 10. Stability and change in party identification: presidential to off-years; 11. The American dilemma: the role of law as a persuasive symbol; 12. Ideology and issue persuasibility: dynamics of racial policy attitudes; 13. The new racism and the American ethos; 14. Retrospect and prospect; Notes; Bibliography; Index

Additional Information

  • Illustrations: 43 b/w illus. 60 tables