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versión On-line ISSN 1668-7027


DELFINO, Gisela I.  y  ZUBIETA, Elena M.. Values and politic: Axiological profile analysis of college students in the city of Buenos Aires (Argentina). Interdisciplinaria [online]. 2011, vol.28, n.1, pp.93-114. ISSN 1668-7027.

Rokeach (1968) considers values as a key concept in Social Sciences: main dependent variable in cultural studies on society and personality, and main independent variable in attitudes and social behaviour studies. The author defends values utility to represent different political positions. Freedom and equality values would reflect that representation due to the effect of unequal power distribution in society which leads people to perceive that some individuals have more freedom than others and relationships in a hierarchical order. Different researches in Political Psychology reveal values as important factors in political phenomena explanation (e.g., Barnea & Schwartz, 1998; Caprara & Zimbardo, 2004; Delfino, Fernández, & Zubieta, 2007). In this line, Schwartz (2001) points out that identified dimensions in relevant studies on political values also can be localized in the frame of its theory of human values. Caprara and colaborators (2006) analysed the relationship between values, personality traits, and vote in national election in Italy 2001 and found that left wing oriented participants show higher punctuations in universalism, benevolence and self-direction values compare with those right wing oriented participants. On the other side, more right oriented subjects show higher punctuations in security, power, achievement, conformity and tradition motives. It was also verify that values explained a major variance percentage than personality traits when predicting passed and future vote, and political option change. With the aim of exploring values profiles in youth people and its variation in terms of ideological positioning and socio-demographical aspects, a descriptive study was carried out -non experimental transversal design- based on a convenience sample of 500 college students from Buenos Aires city and surroundings. In terms of motivational preferences and coherent with previous studies findings -based on students and general population samples (Zubieta et al., 2006, 2007; Zubieta, Fillipi, & Báez, 2007)-, dimensions with major punctuations are self trascendence -others well being and selfish interest trascendence- and openess to change where hedonism and self direction are emphasize. Participants left oriented political position also reinforce previous findings revealing how political orientation varied in terms of college career. Those oriented to social sciences tend to have left oriented political position. In the same sense, left political orientation is related to self trascendence values and has a lesser emphasis in conservation and self-promotion motives. An interesting relationship was found between motives, political orientation, equality and freedom values. Participants who emphasize self-direction, hedonism, achievement, and power values prefer freedom instead of equality while those who emphasize tradition and universalism prefer equality instead of freedom. Students who prefer freedom show higher tendency to openess to change and self promotion values -individual focus- while those who prefer equality emphasize conservation and self transcendences values-social focus. Following Rokeach (1968) postulation, it can be argued that values may not replace but complement political attitudes and behaviours comprehension in terms of left and right tendencies. Values are interceding factors in world vision framings. Individuals holding social instead of individual values orientations, stressing equality over freedom have attitudes and behaviours different to those who hold opposite ideas. In this sense, motivational goals are associated with institutional self selection or college career preferences which combined with factors such age and sex produce different cognitions and behaviours that can be translate, for instance, in freedom or equality preferences.

Palabras clave : Values; Freedom; Equality; Political orientation; College students.

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