Political involvement is conceptualized as an orientation toward a political situation that distinguishes qualitative differences in message processing. This stands in contrast to traditional conceptions of political involvement, which describe deep-seated individual traits that differ little over time. Three categories of situational political involvement are proposed (active involvement, passive involvement, and uninvolved) and accompanying communication patters are examined with a 52-item Q sample during the 1994 California gubernatorial campaign. The actively involved category indicated different communication behaviors than the passively involved - and especially the uninvolved. The most important behaviour distinguishing the actively involved was interpersonal communication - talking about politics.

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Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.os.1997.008
Journal Operant Subjectivity
Stacey F. Kaniham, & Dennis F. Kinsey. (1997). Political Involvement: Characteristics and Categories. Operant Subjectivity, 20(3/4), 97–116. doi:10.15133/j.os.1997.008