The Long-Term Effects of Political Violence on Political Attitudes: Evidence from the Spanish Civil War
33 Pages Posted: 29 Apr 2015 Last revised: 22 Jan 2016
Date Written: January 30, 2015
This article investigates whether political violence has long-term effects on attitudes toward political participation. This is an interesting topic because public engagement and social capital play a crucial role in shaping the economy and democracy. We exploit a recent survey on the 1936-1939 Spanish Civil War to shed light on this question. Our findings indicate that being a member of a family that suffered violence during the Civil War is related to a higher interest, knowledge and engagement in politics. These results stand in stark contrast to the common expectation that political violence leads to lower public engagement, while they are consistent with other studies focusing on the short-term consequences of civil conflicts. Therefore, the legacy of political violence, far from creating political apathy, may be the higher involvement of citizens in politics.
Keywords: Political Violence, Political Attitudes, Social Capital, Spanish Civil War
JEL Classification: D72, D74, D79
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation