Being Outsiders: How ostracism, populism, social capital and social support affect political participation.

University essay from Lunds universitet/Institutionen för psykologi

Abstract: This study investigated how perceived social support may lead ostracised individuals to be more willing to participate in and recommend extreme action against a political cause. Furthermore, it assessed if rejection sensitivity, populism and social capital moderated this effect, and whether these variables are intercorrelated. The participants were asked to read an article describing the proposal to implement tuition fees in Sweden and were then rejected from a student group concerned in the matter. They were then either included in a new student group were they perceived to have high social support for their opinion in the matter, or included in a group with low social support. They were then asked to indicate how willing they were to participate and recommend extreme action against the proposition about tuition fees. The results indicated that those who perceived high social support, and also those high on rejection sensitivity were more willing to participate in and recommend extreme action. Furthermore, these effects were moderated by social capital and populism to moderate extent. The study could also establish a significant correlation between populism, social capital and rejection sensitivity.

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