Shana Kushner Gadarian
- American Politics
Shana Kushner Gadarian's dissertation focuses on how Americans form attitudes about foreign policy in the post-9/11 world and how their attitudes are affected by news coverage of terrorism. Her article, Shaping Public Opinion: The 9/11-Iraq Connection (co-authored with Amy Gershkoff), was published recently in Perspectives on Politics.
Ph.D., Politics, Princeton University, M.A., Politics, Princeton University; B.A. (hon.), Rutgers College
Thesis Title: The Politics of Threat: Terrorism, Media, and Foreign Policy Opinion
Committee: Tali Mendelberg (Chair), Larry M. Bartels, Martin I. Gilens
Abstract: This dissertation explores the role of threat and emotion in shaping Americans attitudes, particularly on foreign affairs. Building on scholarship in political science, communication, and psychology, the project develops a new perspective on how political elites and the mass media may influence opinion formation through evoking emotions such as fear. The project demonstrates that citizens with higher levels of threat prefer more hawkish types of foreign policy and that exposure to media coverage of terrorism increases threat and hawkishness. Using analysis of survey data and two experiments designed for the project, the dissertation shows that the informational and emotional content of news affect attitudes separately.