Community context, personal contact, and support for an antiĝ€"gay rights referendum

Jay Barth, L. Marvin Overby, Scott H. Huffmon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

71 Scopus citations


Using data from an unusual survey, we gauge factors influencing support for a state antiĝ€"gay rights referendum. After controlling for other powerful predictors of attitudes, we find personal contact (especially relevant and voluntary contact) has an important impact on public support, although community context does not. These findings support an integrated notion of interactions with ĝ€outĝ€ groups, grounded in social categorization theory, that sees community context and interpersonal contact as concentric circles, moving from abstract, detached forms of contact to more pronounced, personal forms. However, even among those with substantial interpersonal contact, support for the referendum was still widespread.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)355-365
Number of pages11
JournalPolitical Research Quarterly
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Sociology and Political Science


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