Affective polarization as a marker of social disruption: new approaches to research
The article describes the tool, which was formed and tested to assess politicians’ emotional attitude to predict the impact of affective polarization on the nature of political confrontations. Plutchek’s theoretical scheme of emotions has been operationalized, the tool for assessing emotional perception has been proposed, and its use for measuring the President’s emotional perception has been tested. Eight basic attitudes that can be used as the foundation for behavioural matrices, representing different types of links between emotional evaluations and behavioural attitudes, have been modelled. The tool was tested during the survey with the participation of 1420 respondents. There have been identified two latent factors, which demonstrate the internal connection of eight pairs of bipolar emotions concerning the figure of the President. The first factor covers the emotions of defeat, the second is – emotions of victory. As far as the emotional attitude to the President is concerned, the presence of an emotional split between those who voted for him and those who were against him has been confirmed. It was found out that the structure of the emotional perception of the President by the winners is mobile and combines both positive and negative emotions. At the same time, the structure of the emotional attitude of the losers is monochrome and is mainly represented by negative emotions. Comparison of emotional profiles of representatives of polar groups revealed that the behavioural model of the defeated is formed by mixing two fundamental attitudes, those of the Distressed and the Rejected. The behavioural model of the winners is formed on the ground of the essential attitude, that of the Stakeholders. The emotional profile of those who did not vote for any of the candidates is generally closer to the profile of the winners. Significant differences in the emotional perception of the President between those who voted for and against him have been defined. There have also been fixed the peculiarities of emotional perception of the figure of the President, depending on the level of education and financial status of the respondents.
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