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Politics as Symbolic Action

Mass Arousal and Quiescence

1st Edition - January 1, 1971

Author: Murray Edelman

Language: English
eBook ISBN:
9 7 8 - 1 - 4 8 3 2 - 6 9 9 0 - 0

Politics as Symbolic Action: Mass Arousal and Quiescence deals with the dynamics of development of political threats related to political behavior. The book discusses the… Read more

Politics as Symbolic Action

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Politics as Symbolic Action: Mass Arousal and Quiescence deals with the dynamics of development of political threats related to political behavior. The book discusses the conditions under which the dynamics related to political behavior are the prior causes of political arousal, violence, and quiescence. The text examines the influence of governmental activity on people's beliefs and perceptions—how non-empirical cognitions become the resistant basis of change. The text also examines how the individual phenomenon and the group phenomenon become linked through symbol formation and myths. The book discusses emotion as a catalyst of political ritual and political violence as inferred from Theodore Sarbin's role theory. The use of metaphors, language forms, and mass tensions can all be social-psychological and political processes that can lead to political arousal or quiescence. The book also explains major violent disturbances as having patterns reflective of organization, disorganization, or by leadership example; the book notes the popular notion that the organization or the leader's direction starts or worsens the violence as very simplistic. The book then proposes that political perceptions and beliefs are changeable and that phenomenological perceptions of specific groups of people can identify which political behavior are systematic. The text is suitable for political analysts, political scientists, sociologists, and educators involved in group psychology and analyses.