Despite the vast amount of research conducted on Right-Wing Authoritarianism (RWA), there is still not consensus on what causes an individual to be more or less authoritarian. However, researchers have consistently found RWA to be strongly related to perceptions of threat. In the field of developmental psychology the concept of attachment style is thought to account for the differences between individuals in how they respond to perceived threats. The current study investigated whether or not adult attachment styles can account for why individuals are more or less authoritarian. This study assessed how attachment primes impacted scores on a measure of RWA, and whether or not RWA is related to attachment idealization. Results indicated that the attachment primes did not affect scores on RWA, but RWA was found to be positively related to attachment idealization. Possible models of the origins of RWA are discussed.
The University of Kansas prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, national origin, age, ancestry, disability, status as a veteran, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, gender identity, gender expression and genetic information in the University’s programs and activities. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Director of the Office of Institutional Opportunity and Access, IOA@ku.edu, 1246 W. Campus Road, Room 153A, Lawrence, KS, 66045, (785)864-6414, 711 TTY.