Chapter

Political Interest

Oscar W. Gabriel and Jan W. Van Deth

in The Impact of Values

Published in print September 1998 | ISBN: 9780198294757
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191599040 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0198294751.003.0014

Series: Beliefs in Government

Political Interest

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This chapter examines the relations between value orientation and shifts in levels of political concern and engagement in Western Europe. First, it considers some interpretations of the link between ‘new’ value orientations and increasing political interest. Second, it discusses various operationalizations of the complicated concept ‘interest in politics’. Third, it presents empirical data revealing the salience of post‐materialism as a predictor of political involvement. The small numerical size of post‐materialists, combined with the relative intensity of their interest in politics, suggests that they will constitute a strident and vociferous minority, though likely to exercise only modest influence on government.

Keywords: political interest; post‐materialism; Western Europe

Chapter.  8346 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Comparative Politics

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