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In-Your-Face PoliticsThe Consequences of Uncivil Media$
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Diana C. Mutz

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780691165110

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691165110.001.0001

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Effects on Public Perceptions of the Legitimacy of the Opposition

Effects on Public Perceptions of the Legitimacy of the Opposition

(p.46) Chapter 3 Effects on Public Perceptions of the Legitimacy of the Opposition
In-Your-Face Politics

Diana C. Mutz

Princeton University Press

This chapter uses additional experiments to investigate viewers' perceptions of the legitimacy of the candidates and issue positions they like least. Conflict is central to the democratic process, and it is altogether appropriate that media highlight differences of political opinion. The legitimacy of democratic outcomes requires that political options be contested, and the in-your-face style could be just another way to present conflicting ideas to the public. Televised political discourse plays an important role in familiarizing viewers with issue arguments related to matters of public controversy. If television did so for rationales for oppositional political perspectives in particular, then it could be extremely valuable in discouraging polarization and encouraging perceptions of a legitimate opposition.

Keywords:   public perceptions, democratic process, political discourse, public controversy, opposition, polarization, television

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