Political ideology and psychological symptoms following terror

Avital Laufer, Zahava Solomon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


The article examines the associations between political ideology and level of psychological symptoms in youth exposed to terror attacks. The study included 2,999 7th to 10th graders from various parts of Israel. Political ideology was examined in two ways: (a) as a content dimension: "political stand"-holding right, centrist, or left wing views and (b) as a content-free dimension: "ideological commitment"-which measured the strength of the political ideology regardless of its content. Findings indicated that youth holding right wing beliefs reported less distress. However, strong ideological commitment was associated with higher levels of symptoms, regardless of the political stand. The discussion concerns the differentiated role of content and content-free dimensions of a political ideology and its implication in psychological distress in the wake of political terror.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)414-433
Number of pages20
JournalYouth and Society
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Ideology
  • Political stand
  • Psychological symptoms
  • Terror
  • Youth


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