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The emotions of political polarization

Wednesday, March 13, 2019, 11:00 am – 1:00 pm

Pernicious polarization is the political polarization that divides societies into mutually distrustful “Us vs. Them” camps, extends into social relations and becomes a social identity, and undermines the capacity of democracies to address critical policy problems. McCoy will briefly summarize her macro-level comparative research on the causes and consequences of pernicious polarization for democracy, and will discuss her ongoing research using survey-experiments to better understand the micro-level political psychology of polarization, its tribal dynamics, impact on political behavior, and relationship to populism.  Most importantly to her, she is seeking to assess potential strategies to mitigate the negative consequences for democracy.