In Public Opinion: Democratic Ideals, Democratic Practice, Fourth Edition, Clawson and Oxley link the enduring normative questions of democratic theory to existing empirical research on public opinion. Organized around a series of questions—In a democratic society, what should be the relationship between citizens and their government? Are citizens’ opinions pliable? Are they knowledgeable, attentive, and informed?—the text explores the tension between ideals and their practice. Each chapter focuses on exemplary studies, explaining not only the conclusion of the research, but how it was conducted, so students gain a richer understanding of the research process and see methods applied in context.
Tables, Figures, and Features
Part I. What Should the Role of Citizens Be in a Democratic Society?
Chapter 1. Public Opinion in a Democracy
Appendix to Chapter 1 Studying Public Opinion Empirically
Part II. Are Citizens Pliable?
Chapter 2. Political Socialization
Chapter 3. Mass Media
Chapter 4. Attitude Stability and Attitude Change
Part III. Do Citizens Organize Their Political Thinking?
Chapter 5. Ideology, Partisanship, and Polarization
Chapter 6. Roots of Public Opinion: Personality, Self-Interest, Values, and History
Chapter 7. Roots of Public Opinion: The Central Role of Groups
Part IV. Do Citizens Endorse and Demonstrate Democratic Basics?
Chapter 8. Knowledge, Interest, and Attention to Politics
Chapter 9. Support for Civil Liberties
Chapter 10. Support for Civil Rights
Part V. What Is the Relationship between Citizens and Their Government?
Chapter 11. Trust in Government, Support for Institutions, and Social Capital
Chapter 12. Impact of Public Opinion on Policy
Part VI. What Do We Make of Public Opinion in a Democracy?
Chapter 13. Conclusion
About the Authors