Political Participation and Voter Apathy
Why do some people vote whereas others do not? How do people come to think of themselves as being conservative. moderate. or liberal? Key factors include individuals' political socialization, attitudes and participation.
Political Socialization PolItical socialization is the process by which people learn political attitudes. values, and behavior, For young children. the family is the primary agent of political socialization. and children tend to learn and bold many of the same opinions as their parents. By the time children reach school age they typically identify with the political party (if any) of their parents (Burnham, 1983). As children grow older. other agents of socialization begin to affect their political beliefs, including peers. teachers. and the media. Over time these other agents may cause people's political attitudes and values to change. and individuals may cease to identify with the political party of their parents. Even for adults. political socialization continues through the media, friends. neighbors. and colleagues in the workplace.