Exam I guide - Political Psychology Exam I study guide and...

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Political Psychology: Exam I study guide and notes. I. Origins and Basics of Pol. Psych: Came about between WWI and WWII as a result of increasing political turmoil, the irrationality and destructiveness of WWI, the development of totalitarian regimes, and the role of mass media and propaganda. Harold Lasswell is considered the father of this field of study. He studied the abnormal, the outliers, what was wrong. It is more interesting to study Hitler than George H.W. Bush. Officially, it is a study of the interaction of political and psychological processes. This is a bidirectional field of study; how the political environment affects us, and how we affect it in return. Machiavelli: discourse on how to achieve and retain power. “It is better to be feared than loved.” Fear is the greatest motivator in political activism. Cognition: How we process information. Why we think what we think. Emotion: How we feel. Cannot disassociate what you think and feel. Political Psych is only bound by finding solutions; answering questions and dilemmas that face the world today. We are interested in the process and the outcome, but the type of process doesn’t matter as long as it works. II. State v Trait: Both are factors of one’s personality, but state is vulnerable to the current conditions and exist. Trait is more engrained in us; more about who you are. III. Motives: Many different types of motives, but the primary ones are Affiliation, Achievement, and Power. Winters, “Motives supply energy for action.” (153) He further says, “Motives influence how leaders construe the leadership role. Motives are measured through content analysis of people’s imaginative verbal behavior. Achievement: Winters says that achievement oriented people seem to be rational calculators, pursuing their self-interest. Usually in achievement oriented texts there are references to doing a “good” or “better” job. Example: “I sense the people are seeking something new and better.” Accomplishments are key. Presidents who fall in this category tend to negotiate and search for the best solution. They usually don’t enjoy being president because there is no upward mobility. Achievement is often described in terms of gaining political power. (Ted Kennedy wants to achieve influence).
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