Knowledge about ignorance: New directions in the study of political information

Critical Review: A Journal of Politics and Society 18 (1-3):255-278 (2006)
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Abstract

For decades, scholars have recognized that most citizens have little or no political knowledge, and that it is in fact rational for the average voter to make little or no effort to acquire political information. Rational ignorance is fully compatible with the so‐called “paradox of voting” because it will often be rational for citizens to vote, but irrational for them to become well informed. Furthermore, rational ignorance leads not only to inadequate acquisition of political information, but also to ineffective use of the information that citizens do possess. The combination of these two problems has fundamental implications for a variety of issues in public policy and international affairs.

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Citations of this work

Bullshit in Politics Pays.Adam F. Gibbons - forthcoming - Episteme:1-21.
Taking ignorance seriously: Rejoinder to critics.Jeffrey Friedman - 2006 - Critical Review: A Journal of Politics and Society 18 (4):467-532.
Deliberative democracy and political ignorance.Ilya Somin - 2010 - Critical Review: A Journal of Politics and Society 22 (2-3):253-279.

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