A belief that Americans consider themselves bound by common values and common hopes.
A belief that one can affect government policies.
The belief that citizens have an obligation to participate in civic and political affairs.
The tendency to think of oneself as a member of a particular class. For example, one may self-identify as a worker whose interests are in opposition to those of management.
A split in the United States reflecting differences in people's beliefs about private and public morality, and regarding what standards ought to govern individual behavior and social arrangements.
equality of opportunity
A value in American culture which maintains that all people should have the same opportunity to get ahead.
equality of result
A value in American culture which maintains that there should not be significant income disparities and that the government should guarantee a basic standard of living.
The belief that the political system will respond to citizens. This belief has declined in recent years because of public sentiment that the government has become too big to be responsive.
Confidence in one's own ability to understand and to take part in political affairs. This confidence has remained stable over the past few decades.
One of two camps in the culture war that believes morality is as important (or even more so) than self-expression and that moral rules are derived from God.
A distinctive and patterned way of thinking about how political and economic life ought to be carried out.
The sense that citizens have the capacity to understand and influence political events.
A comprehensive set of political, economic, and social views or ideas concerned with the form and role of government.
One of two camps in the culture war that believes personal freedom is more important than traditional rules and that rules depend on the circumstances of modern life.
A tradition of Protestant churches that required a life of personal achievement as well as religious conviction; a believer had an obligation to work, save money, obey the secular law, and do good works. Max Weber attributed the rise of capitalism, in part, to this ethic.