Political_Science_164A_-_Fall_1992_-_Stoker_-_Midterm - MON...

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Unformatted text preview: 10/21/2002 MON 17:36 FAX 6434330 MOFFITT LIBRARY 001 - Midterm Examination Fall, 1992 i~ . ' PS 1642 — Political Psychology I. Short Essay - Answer one of the following two questions (25 minutes) 1. According to political scientists, (1) political debates tend to draw a politically informed and interested set of viewers; and (2) as a consequence of watching the debate, viewers tend to have intensified or maintained the attitudes toward the candidates that they held previously, and not to have changed their minds. Discuss these findings, drawing on theories of cognition and on the cognitive model of attitudes. 2. "The term ’stereotype’ was coined in the 1920’s, well before the development of medern schema research in cognitive psychology. Nevertheless, contemporary cognitive research has contributed to Our understanding of stereotyping, supplementing (and sometimes challenging) the perspectives on stereotyping offered by the older psychodynamic and learning traditions." Discuss, and elaborate upon, this statement. II. Interpretation - Answer two of the following three questions (5-10 minutes) Each of the statements below illustrates a psychological concept or process that we have discussed. Identify what it is that each statement might be taken to represent. (One or two sentences will do here.) 1. {Jervis, discussing psychological perspectives on international relations:] "When a person likes a state, he [often] comes to evaluate it favorably on dimensions that are not logically linked to the attributes that caused him to like it in the first place." 2. [Kanwisher, speaking of international relations scholarship:] "{There is a strong] bias among international relations theorists for structural theories that denigrate psychological and bureaucratic factorS, favoring political accounts of political phenomena." 3. [Kingdom‘s work on candidates for legislative officez] "Winners tend to place great emphasis on their own personal characteristics as determinants of voter’s decisions and to assign party label a relatively low place. By comparison, losers tend to upgrade party label and downgrade the personal characteristics of the candidates." III. Short Answer — Answer one of the following two questions (10 minutes) 1. Milgram notes that, among those informed of the results of his research on obedience, "a commonly offered explanation is that those who shocked the victim at the most severe level were monsters, the sadistic fringe of society." Why might we have predicted this explanation to be one which is "commonly offered?" What central piece of evidence does he rely upon to dismiss this explanation? Might some kind of personality argument (e.g., the "authoritarian personality") still be relevant to explaining some of his findings? (Explain) 2. As we approach the November 3rd election, George Bush is repeatedly stressing two claims about Bill Clinton: that Clinton will raise taxes on the middle class, and that Clinton can’t be trusted to teli the truth. Adopting the cognitive model of attitude formation, describe how attitudes toward Bill Clinton would change if Bush succeeds in making these considerations more salient in the minds of the voters. Include a symbolic/graphical depiction in your answer. 10/21/2002 MON 17:37 FAX 6434330 MOFFITT LIBRARY 002 IV. Short Answer — Answer one of the following two questions (10 minutes) 1. Abelson describes the following "revolutionary propaganda" (which sounds remarkably similar to contemporary election rhetoric) as attempting to draw the support of those who find themselves in miserable circumstances (a noxious, dissonant state): "You are now part of the glorious Cause. Reject with us your miserable present circumstances. Look forward to the glorious future when all will be different. The rotten present regime despises you and is responsible for your misery. The Cause will attack the regime and lead you to the glorious future. The regime will try to prevent this but we will triumph." Using a dissonance diagram, depict the state of affairs portrayed by the propaganda, and comment on why this propaganda might be effective (serve to draw the support of those currently in "miserable circumstances"). 2. During the 1980 elections, numerous local and state pro-life organizations adopted a church leafletting strategy "that seemed to have been a huge success" when used by the Iowa Pro-Life Action Council in 1978 (Hershey 1984, p. 195). Hershey continues: "The central element [of the strategy] -- the leaflet —— is attention attracting and easy to transmit. The logic of the strategy is clear and simple. Its cost is minimal, as political advertising goes. And it was available as a model since it was distributed (through national pro—life channels) to groups in every state. Besides, the church leafletting does not bend the social or moral values of other pro-life activists. The strategy centers on churches and people who attend them, institutions that have been so important to pro- lifers. It provides a dramatic means of expressing the deeply felt values that pro-life activists share" (Hershey 1984, p. 209) Referring to these comments, and framing your answer in terms of the four processcs governing whether observational learning takes place, explain why the leafletting strategy was so widely adopted in 1980. V. Identification - Define and identify the significance offour of the following terms/phrases (15 minutes) availability heuristic (Freudian) projection subtyping model of schema change avoidance learning stimulus generalization bolstering zero valence 749999.”? ...
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