The association of religiosity and political conservatism: The role of political engagement

Ariel Malka, Yphtach Lelkes, Sanjay Srivastava, Adam Cohen, Dale T. Miller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

42 Scopus citations

Abstract

Some argue that there is an organic connection between being religious and being politically conservative. We evaluate an alternative thesis that the relation between religiosity and political conservatism largely results from engagement with political discourse that indicates that these characteristics go together. In a combined sample of national survey respondents from 1996 to 2008, religiosity was associated with conservative positions on a wide range of attitudes and values among the highly politically engaged, but this association was generally weaker or nonexistent among those less engaged with politics. The specific political characteristics for which this pattern existed varied across ethno-religious groups. These results suggest that whether religiosity translates into political conservatism depends to an important degree on level of engagement with political discourse.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)275-299
Number of pages25
JournalPolitical Psychology
Volume33
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2012

Keywords

  • Conservative ideology
  • Political attitudes
  • Political engagement
  • Religion
  • Social influence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Philosophy
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Political Science and International Relations

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