ERIC Number: ED187645
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1976-Apr
Reference Count: 0
Cognitive-Perceptual Factors in the Political Alienation Process: A Test of Six Models.
The effectiveness of sex research models which measure adolescents' feelings of political alienation is investigated and discussed and a new model is formulated. The six models include life dissatisfaction, personal depreciation, critical perceptions of political reality, irrational beliefs, perceptions of political threat, and cognitive simplicity (which posits that if the individual attempts to understand the complex political system from a simplistic framework, faulty perceptions which foster feelings of political alienation occur). The sample consisted of 460 senior high school students who answered a self-administered questionnaire which included measures of all six models. Results indicate that the composite measures for the political reality, political threat, and personal depreciation models manifest almost equal influence on adolescents' feelings of political alienation. Also, the life dissatisfaction, irrational belief, and cognitive simplicity models have very little effect on political alienation. Thus, the new model, learned political helplessness, is based on the political reality, political threat, and personal depreciation models. An implication is that learned political helplessness among preadults can be prevented if the adolescent is provided with an experiential basis for believing that his efforts have an effect on the operation of his personal sociopolitical system and that threats from that system can be countered by his personal actions. (Author/KC)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Yale Univ., New Haven, CT.
Note: For a related document, see SO 012 631. Paper presented at Annual Meeting of the Midwest Political Science Association (Chicago, IL, April 29- May 2, 1976).