Going to War in Iraq: When Citizens and the Press Matter, George E. Marcus, Stanley Feldman and Leonie Huddy

Reviewed by Shana Kushner Gadarian

In times of foreign crises, how does a largely inattentive public make sense of arguments from political leaders about the need for military action? What role does an active and critical press play in informing the public and helping citizens decide whether a country should go to war? A great deal of research in the post–September 11 era has criticized the media’s performance during this time as more lapdog than watchdog of government. In an in-depth analysis of American public opinion and media coverage during the lead-up to the Iraq War, Stanley Feldman, Leonie Huddy, and George E. Marcus challenge the assertion that the press as a whole failed to provide various perspectives on whether the United States should go to war. Their analysis of news coverage in the fall of 2002 contests this conventional wisdom by demonstrating that voices critical of the war effort were present in the media and available for skeptical citizens, but these voices were much more likely to appear in newspapers rather than on television news. Even as early as fall 2002, citizens aware of this more critical news and motivated to deliberate on its meaning were more opposed to the war than their counterparts not exposed to newspapers. One contribution of this book is to bring the perspective of dual process models to theorize about which citizens, in this time period, would be able to r

To continue reading, see options above.

About PSQ's Editor


Full Access

Join the Academy of Political Science and automatically receive Political Science Quarterly.


A Purple Agenda For The Next Four Years
June 20, 2024
7:30 p.m.–9:00 p.m. ET


Editor’s spotlight

Virtual Issue

Introduction: Black Power and the Civil Rights Agendas of Charles V. Hamilton
Marylena Mantas and Robert Y. Shapiro


Search the Archives

Publishing since 1886, PSQ is the most widely read and accessible scholarly journal with distinguished contributors such as: Lisa Anderson, Robert A. Dahl, Samuel P. Huntington, Robert Jervis, Joseph S. Nye, Jr., Theda Skocpol, Woodrow Wilson

view additional issues

Most read

Articles | Book reviews

Understanding the Bush Doctrine
Robert Jervis

The Study of Administration
Woodrow Wilson

Notes on Roosevelt's "Quarantine" Speech
Dorothy Borg

view all

New APS Book

China in a World of Great Power Competition   CHINA IN A WORLD OF GREAT POWER COMPETITION

About US

Academy of Political Science

The Academy of Political Science, promotes objective, scholarly analyses of political, social, and economic issues. Through its conferences and publications APS provides analysis and insight into both domestic and foreign policy issues.

Political Science Quarterly

With neither an ideological nor a partisan bias, PSQ looks at facts and analyzes data objectively to help readers understand what is really going on in national and world affairs.

Stay Connected

newsstand locator
About APS