New measures of political attitudes in Northern Ireland: A social identity perspective

P Irwing, Maurice Stringer

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12 Citations (Scopus)


Twenty-eight measures of political attitudes were validated on a sample of 388 undergraduate students from Northern Ireland. Confirmatory factor analysis showed the scales to be unidimensional, discriminantly valid, with generally excellent reliabilities. The pattern of intergroup differentiation between Catholics and Protestants conformed to Social Identity Theory, with maximum differentiation on important issues, Catholics adopting a social change ideology and Protestants defending the status quo. Catholics and Protestants resolved their respective group associations with violence by condemning both it and terrorism, and also reported interdenominational friendships. The utility of these new measures of political attitudes in terms of measuring changes due to political initiatives, cross-community reconciliation programmes and in assessing changes in attitudes as a result of integrated or segregated denominational schooling within the Province is outlined. Copyright (C) 2000 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)139-154
JournalJournal of Community and Applied Social Psychology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - Mar 2000


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