Polarization makes us see politics from more limited points of view, writes Dr Jonathan Benson

In a blog post for the LSE, Dr Jonathan Benson writes about how political polarization undermines democracy.

Based on an article published in The American Political Science Review, Benson discusses the dangers of political polarization. He explains that the main threat isn’t that people come to accept misinformation or falsehoods, but that it narrows our perspectives on politics.

For democracy to work, he argues, it needs a diversity of perspectives from which to understand and view political issues. Polarising rhetoric ’collapses our varied identities and compresses them into a more limited number of mega-perspectives.’

’By telling us that politics is a struggle of good vs. evil between an ’us’ and a ’them’, it suggests that there are only two perspectives from which to view and understand politics’.

Dr Jonathan Benson is a Hallsworth Research Fellow at the Department of Politics.