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Research Colloquium - Monika Verbalyte

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Title: "Role of Emotions in Societal and Political Polarization"

Increasing value and political polarization has been observed in many Western European countries, however, there is little known on how specific emotions drive this process. For some, the obvious answer is anger as emotion related to blaming and out-party dislike. Contempt, even stronger expression of out-group hostility, is also likely to be responsible for loathing across party lines. Moreover, fear is argued to be related to radicalization, since insecurity lying in the core of this emotion encourages people to search for stability in finding scapegoats e.g. migrants or elites, and thus developing extreme attitudes. Others theorize that from the powerlessness rooted in anxiety arises ressentiment leading to the political cynicism and mistrust, also related to populist support and the negative stance towards mainstream parties.

Theoretically, all these mechanisms are plausible explanations of opinion and political polarization. Empirically, they have not been tested in the context of polarization, so far.

Meeting Link:   https://uni-flensburg.webex.com/uni-flensburg/j.php?MTID=m64dfe3412cbf75af600b1a30b1419be2
Meeting number (access code): 2734 364 3797
Meeting password: ices