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Persuasive PeersSocial Communication and Voting in Latin America$
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Andy Baker, Barry Ames, and Lúcio Rennó

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780691205779

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: May 2021

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691205779.001.0001

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(p.224) 9 Conclusion
Persuasive Peers

Andy Baker

Barry Ames

Lúcio Rennó

Princeton University Press

This concluding chapter summarizes the findings from the previous chapters. Seen collectively, the findings paint a somewhat complicated picture of democratic citizenship in Latin America. On the one hand, the high rates of vote switching during campaigns, often as a result of informal discussion, reflect an open-mindedness and a responsiveness to counter-argumentation that is absent in the more polarized and partisan United States. In thinking about their vote decisions, moreover, Latin American voters seek informed advice, identifying knowledgeable peers from whom to learn. On the other hand, this social process during the campaign does not necessarily yield better decisions, at least according to the correct-voting criterion. Moreover, this process is dominated by the upper class in a region that already suffers deep socioeconomic inequalities.

Keywords:   democratic citizenship, Latin America, vote switching, election campaigns, political discussion, vote decisions, Latin American voters, socioeconomic inequalities

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