Chapter 7: The origins and effect of negative partisanship
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‘Negative partisanship’ has become a ubiquitous term in political science to indicate intense hostility towards the outparty. Yet, prior work has remained unclear about its theoretical foundations and corresponding measurements as well as the transferability of the concept across party systems. This chapter aims to address these gaps in three ways: First, it utilizes Social Identity Theory to examine negative partisanship as an identity rather than an affect or attitude. Second, it uses this framework to derive an identity-based measure of negative partisanship. Last, the author applies this measure to data from the United States and Sweden to illustrate the presence of negative partisanship in both party systems. Overall, this chapter demonstrates the powerful role of partisanship – positive and negative – in shaping political behaviour.

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