Item Details

Has the Rise of Spoken-Word Mass Media Transformed Modern Congressional Speech?

Malkovich, Leah
Format
Thesis/Dissertation; Online
Author
Malkovich, Leah
Advisor
Kirkland, Justin
Abstract
What is to blame for the decline in congressional compromise? Is it a rise in polarization, or is there more to the story? In this paper, I argue that a growing lack of compromise in Congress is due to a surge in emotionality and resulting disconnect in speech: when one party is especially negative, the other is especially positive. I posit the claim that this increasing divergence was precipitated by the rise of spoken-word mass media (radio and television), in which emotionality is rewarded. Working with a dataset consisting of every floor speech from 1873 to 2017, I utilize sentiment analysis to determine the level of emotionality in each year’s Congress. As a result of my analysis, I find significance at my expected breakpoints.
Language
English
Published
University of Virginia, Government - Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, MA (Master of Arts), 2019
Published Date
2019-11-29
Degree
MA (Master of Arts)
Collection
Libra ETD Repository
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Availability

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