DO OUR CHILDREN INHERIT OUR POLITICAL CONVICTIONS? VALUE TRANSMISSION AND VALUE CHANGE IN AN INDUSTRIALIZED SOCIETY
Boehnke, K, International University Bremen, Germany
The invited address briefly summarizes psychological discourse on value transmission and sociological and political science discourse on value change. These two areas--to the present day--have been mostly disconnected. The paper urges to consider intrafamilial value transmission within a societal context, particularly in reference to the concept 'zeitgeist', a difficult to measure attitudinal undercurrent observable in a given society at a given time period. As illustrative material the presentation uses (1) data of 100 mother-father-child triads--university students and their parents-who were surveyed with the Schwartz Value Survey; (2) data from a study with 509 8th and 9th graders, their opposite-sex siblings, and both their parents collected in Berlin, Germany, who were surveyed with regard to their approval of dominance ideologies and of xenophobic attitudes; (3) approximately 150 university students and both their parents, who had to fill in Bond and Leung's Social Axioms Scale, scales measuring approval of dominance ideologies (as in Study 2), and scales measuring participation in right-wing behavioral activities. The address will demonstrate how both lines of research (value transmission and value change) can be fitted into a unified approach. Analyses support this notion and make obvious that the processes of value change and value transmission are interrelated but separate processes. Transmission of values and political orientations in itself seems to be most successful for values and political orientations that are not (!) cherished by the cultural mainstream.