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Left or Right? Sources of Political Orientation: The Roles of Genetic Factors, Cultural Transmission, Assortative Mating, and Personality

Left or Right? Sources of Political Orientation: The Roles of Genetic Factors, Cultural... In this study, we used an extended twin family design to investigate the influences of genetic and cultural transmission as well as different sources of nonrandom mating on 2 core aspects of political orientation: acceptance of inequality and rejecting system change. In addition, we studied the sources of phenotypic links between Big Five personality traits and political beliefs using self- and other reports. Data of 1,992 individuals (224 monozygotic and 166 dizygotic twin pairs, 92 unmatched twins, 530 spouses of twins, 268 fathers, and 322 mothers) were analyzed. Genetically informative analyses showed that political attitudes are genetically but not environmentally transmitted from parents to offspring and that a substantial proportion of this genetic variance can be accounted for by genetic variance in personality traits. Beyond genetic effects and genotypic assortative mating, generation-specific environmental sources act to increase twins' and spouses' resemblance in political beliefs. The results suggest multiple sources of political orientations in a modern democracy. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Personality and Social Psychology American Psychological Association

Left or Right? Sources of Political Orientation: The Roles of Genetic Factors, Cultural Transmission, Assortative Mating, and Personality

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References (79)

Publisher
American Psychological Association
Copyright
Copyright © 2011 American Psychological Association
ISSN
0022-3514
eISSN
1939-1315
DOI
10.1037/a0025560
pmid
21988277
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

In this study, we used an extended twin family design to investigate the influences of genetic and cultural transmission as well as different sources of nonrandom mating on 2 core aspects of political orientation: acceptance of inequality and rejecting system change. In addition, we studied the sources of phenotypic links between Big Five personality traits and political beliefs using self- and other reports. Data of 1,992 individuals (224 monozygotic and 166 dizygotic twin pairs, 92 unmatched twins, 530 spouses of twins, 268 fathers, and 322 mothers) were analyzed. Genetically informative analyses showed that political attitudes are genetically but not environmentally transmitted from parents to offspring and that a substantial proportion of this genetic variance can be accounted for by genetic variance in personality traits. Beyond genetic effects and genotypic assortative mating, generation-specific environmental sources act to increase twins' and spouses' resemblance in political beliefs. The results suggest multiple sources of political orientations in a modern democracy.

Journal

Journal of Personality and Social PsychologyAmerican Psychological Association

Published: Mar 10, 2012

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