ERIC Number: ED245288
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-May
Reference Count: 0
Before and After "The Day After": A Nationwide Survey of a Movie's Impact.
Adams, William C.; And Others
A study assessed the effect of the telelvision drama "The Day After" on attitudes toward (1) defense spending, (2) a nuclear freeze, (3) nuclear disarmament, (4) the likelihood of war, (5) the severity of such a war, (6) personal political efficacy on the issue of war and peace, and (7) the likelihood of nuclear war under the presidency of Ronald Reagan or Walter Mondale. Nationwide telephone interviews were conducted on the evening of the broadcast--510 prior to and 418 following the broadcast. The survey results indicated that the program did not alter the percentage of viewers who supported or opposed a mutual nuclear freeze, nor did it change the proportion opposed to unilateral disarmament. There was no indication of any alteration in attitudes about the severity or likelihood of nuclear war. When controlled for age, education, sex, and political party affiliation, the data still revealed no marked attitudinal shifts. There was, however, a statistically significant fluctuation in the image of President Ronald Reagan, surprisingly in his favor. Nearly 47% on the pretest and 58% on the posttest refused to label either Reagan or presidential candidate Walter Mondale as more likely to preside over a nuclear war. Apart from this increased reluctance to link Reagan with nuclear war, the broadcast produced no significant evidence of changed attitudes or behavior. (HTH)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Day After (The); Reagan (Ronald)
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the International Communication Association (34th, San Francisco, CA, May 24-28, 1984).