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IR Workshop – Rachel Stein, George Washington University

February 12, 2018 @ 12:00 am

IR Workshop – Rachel Stein, George Washington University

DateFebruary 6, 2017

Time3:00pm to 4:30pm

Location
4357 Bunche Hall 

Contact

Abstract:Public perceptions of threat from abroad can have an important impact on the course of both domestic and foreign policy, but how do ordinary people, who lack both the access to information and the political sophistication of elite actors, assess the source and severity of foreign threats? In this paper, I argue that media coverage, and particularly the propensity of the media to personify foreign adversaries plays an important role in threat perception at the mass level. Personification refers to the use of specific individuals, usually leaders, to stand in for more abstract entities like states or terrorist groups. Given the media’s reliance on visual imagery to attract and keep the attention of viewers, personification often involves widespread dissemination of the image of the enemy leader. In turn, these images have the power to influence threat perception by activating out-group stereotypes concerning violence and trustworthiness. Using a survey experiment, I show how the perception of threat is influenced by an interaction between the preexisting biases of the individual viewer and the stereotypicality of the image itself. While preliminary, these results suggest that the enemy images that individuals encounter in the course of their media consumption may play an important role in shaping mass attitudes towards both the use of military force abroad, and the dehumanization, repression and mistreatment of minority groups at home. Full paper can be found here

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Details

Date:
February 12, 2018
Time:
12:00 am
Website:
/event/ir-workshop-rachel-stein-george-washington-university

Details

Date:
February 12, 2018
Time:
12:00 am
Website:
/event/ir-workshop-rachel-stein-george-washington-university