Understanding responses to political conflict: interactive effects of the need for closure and salient conflict schemas.

Golec de Zavala, Agnieszka and Federico, Christopher (2004) Understanding responses to political conflict: interactive effects of the need for closure and salient conflict schemas. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 87 (6). pp. 750-762. ISSN 0022-3514

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Abstract

Two studies examined the relationship between the need for cognitive closure and preferences for conflict-resolution strategies in two different samples of elite political actors. While research suggests that the high need for closure should be associated with competitiveness, we argue that this relationship should be strongest among political actors with a hostile “conflict schema,” or representation of what a conflict is and how it should be dealt with. We provide evidence for this hypothesis using archival survey data on American foreign policy officials’ attitudes toward international conflict at the height of the Cold War (Study 1) and our own data on the relationship between the need for closure and conflict-strategy preferences among samples of activists from two political parties in Poland – a centrist party with a reputation for cooperativeness and an extremist party with a reputation for confrontation (Study 2). The broader implications of these findings are discussed.

Item Type:Article
Research Areas:School of Health and Education > Psychology
ID Code:4270
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Deposited On:02 Mar 2010 09:15
Last Modified:19 Jul 2014 14:20

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