Negativity Effects in Impression Formation: A Test in the Political Arena

  title={Negativity Effects in Impression Formation: A Test in the Political Arena},
  author={Jill Klein},
  journal={Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin},
  pages={412 - 418}
  • J. Klein
  • Published 1 August 1991
  • Psychology
  • Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin
Negative information has a stronger influence on impressions of others than positive information, a tendency known as the negativity effect. The hypothesis that this effect would characterize impressions of presidential candidates was tested using National Election Study surveys from 1984 and 1988. Respondents rated the presidential candidates on a number of personality traits. Aggregate-level analyses revealed that personality characteristics that the nation, on average, judged to represent… 
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