Canetti, Daphna. Halperin, Eran. Sharvit, Keren. Hobfoll, E. Stevan.2009. A New Stress-Based Model of Political Extremism Personal Exposure to Terrorism, Psychological Distress, and Exclusionist Political Attitudes. Journal of Conflict Resolution. 63 (3), 363-389.
Does exposure to terrorism lead to hostility toward minorities? Drawing on theories from clinical and social psychology, we propose a stress-based model of political extremism in which psychological distress—which is largely overlooked in political scholarship—and threat perceptions mediate the relationship between exposure to terrorism and attitudes toward minorities. To test the model, a epresentative sample of 469 Israeli Jewish respondents was interviewed on three ccasions at six-month intervals. Structural equation Modeling indicated that exposu e to terrorism predicted psychological distress (t1), which pred cted perceived threat from Palestinian citizens of Israel (t2), which, in turn, predicted exclusionist attitudes toward Palestinian citizens of Israel (t3). These findings provide solid evidence and a mechanism for the hypothesis that terrorism introduces nond mocratic attitudes threatening minority rights. It suggests that psychological dist ess plays an important role in political decision making and should be incorporated imodels drawing upon political psychology.