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Harry Potter and the Deathly Donald

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  12 October 2016

Diana C. Mutz*
University of Pennsylvania


Few empirical studies suggest that fictional stories can influence political opinions. Nonetheless, in this study I demonstrate the relevance of Harry Potter consumption to oppositional attitudes toward Donald Trump and his worldview. Using multivariate observational models and panel data from 2014 to 2016, results suggest that the lessons of the Harry Potter series have influenced levels of opposition to punitive policies and support for tolerance of groups considered outside the American mainstream. Further, they predict public reactions to Donald Trump above and beyond their influence on policies consistent with his views.

Copyright © American Political Science Association 2016 

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