Can emotions be an important mediator in precipitating political participation and affecting vote choice among voters? Social scientists recently have started paying more attention to understand the emotional response of individuals to political issues often caused by exposure and attention to media messages as well as interpersonal communications. It has been demonstrated in various research that different emotions – negative and positive – cause different response among individuals depending upon the contexts affecting political participation. Among all negative valence emotions, anger and fear stand out both because of the degree of scholarly attention as well as their contradictory and dissimilar effects on political behavior (Lecheler and Schuck 2013). There is evidence that threat and anxiety can spur information processing and increase political learning, but not campaign involvement (Marcus and Mackuen 1993; Nadaeu, Neimi, and Amato 1995), while fear leads to withdrawal or retreat from political participation. At the same time, anger is associated with increasing political participation (Valentino et al 2011; Lecheler, Schuck and deVreese 2013). It must however be noted that most of these studies are based in advanced developed countries and no attempt has been made yet to empirically study the role of emotions in political behavior in developing countries. In this paper, emotion is studied in the highly diverse context of India by analyzing the role of emotions in the 2014 Indian national election and to what extent they affected political participation and vote choice. Our two-wave panel study in Delhi, which for the first time included an emotion scale, is used here to understand the dissimilar effects of fear and anger among different social and religious groups with particular focus on Muslim minorities. It should be noted however that emotions are not static or a permanent characteristic of a person or candidate image and can change over time. Our two-wave panel study helps in capturing some of these nuances and factors that cause change in emotions. This presentation discusses some of the preliminary findings to get the feedbacks.
About the speaker
Taberez Ahmed Neyazi (PhD, National University of Singapore) is an Assistant Professor at the Centre for Culture, Media and Governance at Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI), New Delhi. He serves as India’s Coordinator for “Media Campaigns and Influence in Elections”, a collaborative project with colleagues at Emory University and Cleveland State University. Before moving to JMI, he held numerous fellowships including: Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) Postdoctoral Fellow at Kyoto University; Visiting Fellow at the East-West Center in Hawaii and Nanyang Technological University in Singapore; and German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) fellow at Erfurt University.. He has contributed to several edited volumes and his articles have appeared in several international refereed journals such as International Journal of Press/Politics, Media, Culture and Society, Media International Australia, Asian Journal of Political Science, Economic and Political Weekly, among others. His most recent publication includes a co-edited volume, Democratic Transformation and the Vernacular Public Arena in India (Routledge, London, 2014).
Date & Time: Monday 29 June, 12 noon
Venue: CNM Dept Blk AS6 03-33