Title

The Advantage of Disadvantage: Underdogs in Politics

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2009

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

https://doi.org/10.1080/01973530802659810

Abstract

Political candidates are often labeled as underdogs, either by the press or themselves. This paper explores connotations associated with the underdog label in the political arena. We argue that being labeled an underdog has a strategic advantage because it is associated with positive qualities, particularly likeability. The current studies demonstrate that partisan supporters prefer to see their favored candidate as an underdog compared to people not aligned with the candidate, and underdog-labeled entities are perceived to be warmer, and no less competent, than frontrunners. Discussion focuses on the advantages and risks of carrying the underdog label in the political arena.

Was this content written or created while at USF?

Yes

Citation / Publisher Attribution

Basic and Applied Social Psychology, v. 31, issue 1, p. 24-31

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