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Authors

Kats

Abstract

Trends in public concerns from the early 1960's to the mid-1970's are compared for Israel and the United States, relating changes in concerns to historical and social change which occurred during the decade in both societies. The analysis is based on open-ended questions regarding views of either personal or nation's future -- hopes and fears for that future -- and a Self-Anchoring Rating Scale, by which the respondent evaluated personal and nation's situation in various time perspectives. The Israeli's future perspective became centered around peace and war, removing other issues to a secondary plane of concern. In contrast, the American became more concerned about social issues. The most striking difference in the evaluations of self and society was that the Israelis revealed in the seventies a personal depressive mood, while the Americans were at that time more pessimistic about their society's situation and future.

The purpose of this paper is to compare public concerns in two societies, Israel and the United States, at two time periods, the early 1960's and the mid-1970's. The basic question asked is: How do different populations react, as evinced in their concerns, to what happened in their lives and country over the course of more than a decade?

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