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Citizen Politics

Citizen Politics
Public Opinion and Political Parties in Advanced Industrial Democracies

Sixth Edition

© 2014 | 360 pages | CQ Press

Now, more than ever, people drive the democratic process. What people think of their government and its leaders, how (or whether) they vote, and what they do or say about a host of political issues greatly affect the further strengthening or erosion of democracy and democratic ideals. This fully updated new sixth edition of Citizen Politics continues to offer the only truly comparative study of political attitudes and behavior in the United States, Great Britain, France, and Germany.

In addition to its comprehensive, thematic examination of political values, political activity, voting, and public images of government within a cross-national context, Citizen Politics explores new forms of political activity, such as Internet-based activism and new forms of political consumerism. All chapters have been updated with the latest research and empirical evidence. Further, Dalton includes new discussions of citizen sophistication and its implications for democratic citizenship.

Tables and Figures
1. Introduction
2. The Nature of Mass Beliefs
3. How We Participate
4. Who Participates?
5. Values in Change
6. Issues and Ideological Orientations
7. Elections and Political Parties
8. The Social Bases of Party Support
9. Partisanship and Voting
10. Attitudes and Voting Choice
11. Political Representation
12. Citizens and the Democratic Process
Appendix A: Statistical Primer
Appendix B: Major Data Sources
Appendix C: World Values Survey Codebook

“Dalton's book does an excellent job of making behavioral methods and statistics accessible for undergrads.”

Robert Hinckley
SUNY College at Potsdam

“Dalton's use of descriptive data and figures as well his emphasis on the overall themes of social change, weakening cleavages, and cognitive mobilization make the book an especially effective tool for teaching comparative public opinion and political behavior.”

Matthew Singer
University of Connecticut

“Citizen Politics does an outstanding job of surveying a vast literature dealing with political behavior.”

Laron K. Williams
University of Missouri

An interesting book overall, but there in not enough European/UK focus for the courses I deliver.

Mr David Ness
Social Science, Moray College UHI
May 29, 2014

This is an amazingly helpful textbook for teaching Comparative Political Behavior at undergraduate level. My students found it easy to understand the main theories of political behavior after reading Dalton's book.

Dr Burlacu Diana
Social Science , Humboldt University of Berlin
November 28, 2013
Key features


  • Coverage of the most recent elections in the U.S., Britain, France, and Germany help readers understand the latest trends in voter behavior.
  • New discussions of citizen sophistication show readers its implications for democratic citizenship.
  • Coverage of current controversies in public opinion and electoral research encourages critical thinking.
  • Expanded coverage of cross-national research on political representation deepens the research base of the text.
  • A new data module from the World Values Survey facilitates student research projects.
  • In-text learning aids include updated lists of suggested readings in each chapter, as well as an extensive bibliography on the most recent political behavior research.


  • Provides the only truly comparative study of political participation, behavior, and elections in the U.S., Germany, France, and Great Britain, highlighting what is unique and common.
  • Explores competing political theories using a rich array of genuinely comparative data, encouraging readers to undertake further analyses on their own.
  • Includes a wealth of current data on elections, public opinion, political values, and more, all in nearly 100 tables and figures.
  • Provides useful appendices, including a statistical primer, list of major data sources, and accompanying codebook.

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