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date: 18 November 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines political participation as a unique capacity possessed by humans that “fundamentally shapes a human being.” It argues that without political participation, we would lose much of our identity as “political actors” who seek to influence and change the world they live in. The chapter first explains what political participation is and why some people participate in collective political action while others do not. It then considers a range of individual factors that motivate political participation, such as ideology, identity, emotion, and instrumentality, and the role of social-level factors including social networks. It also describes a social identity model of collective action (SIMCA), which suggests that affective injustice (e.g., group-based anger), perceived group efficacy, and politicized collective identity predict engagement in collective action. The chapter concludes by discussing moral obligation as a motive for participating in political collective action.

Keywords: anger, collective action, ideology, instrumentality, moral obligation, political participation, politicized collective identity, social identity, social identity model of collective action, social networks

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