Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-8bbf57454-jcfbx Total loading time: 0.301 Render date: 2022-01-24T03:36:42.982Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "metricsAbstractViews": false, "figures": true, "newCiteModal": false, "newCitedByModal": true, "newEcommerce": true, "newUsageEvents": true }

“Please Clap”: Applause, Laughter, and Booing during the 2016 GOP Presidential Primary Debates

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  12 October 2016

Patrick A. Stewart
Affiliation:
University of Arkansas, Fayetteville
Austin D. Eubanks
Affiliation:
University of Arkansas, Fayetteville
Jason Miller
Affiliation:
University of Arkansas, Fayetteville

Abstract

The 2016 Republican Party presidential primary debates were unprecedented in the amount of media and public interest they generated. Substantially driven by curiosity about reality television celebrity Donald Trump, the initial debates hosted by FOX News and CNN both reflected and validated interest in his candidacy while proffering attention to a full slate of more traditional presidential contenders in front of boisterous audiences. This study considers these audiences’ response. Whether applause, laughter, booing, or combinations thereof, these group utterances provide a reliable metric by which insights may be derived concerning partisan attitudes towards Trump and the other candidates, as well as the unity of the Republican Party. Findings suggest that the debate setting in concert with the demographics of the in-person audience may well have influenced initial response to the candidates and as a result have subtle yet lingering consequences for the 2016 presidential election.

Type
Articles
Copyright
Copyright © American Political Science Association 2016 

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

References

Atkinson, Maxwell. 1984. Our Masters’ Voices: The Language and Body-language of Politics. New York, NY: Routledge.Google Scholar
Benoit, William L., Hansen, Glenn J., and Verser, Rebecca M.. 2003. “A Meta-analysis of the Effects of Viewing US Presidential Debates. ” Communication Monographs 70 (4): 335–50.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Beres, Tom. 2015. “GOP Debate Tickets Spoken for, Application Process Ended.” July 28. WKYC News. http://www.wkyc.com/story/news/local/cleveland/2015/07/28/gop-debate-tickets-spoken-for-application-process-ended/30782225/.Google Scholar
Bull, Peter. 2003. The Microanalysis of Political Communication: Claptrap and Ambiguity. New York, NY: Routledge.Google Scholar
Bull, Peter and Miskinis, Karolis. 2015. “Whipping it up! An Analysis of Audience Responses to Political Rhetoric in Speeches from the 2012 American Presidential Elections.” Journal of Language and Social Psychology 34 (5): 521–38.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Clayman, Steven. E. 1992. “Caveat Orator: Audience Disaffiliation in the 1988 Presidential Debates.” Quarterly Journal of Speech 78 (1): 3360.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Clayman, Steven. E. 1993. “Booing: The Anatomy of a Disaffiliative Response.” American Sociological Review 51: 110–30.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
de Moreas, Lisa. 2015. “CNN GOP Draws Nearly 23 Million Viewers.” September 17. Deadline Hollywood. http://deadline.com/2015/09/cnn-gop-debate-record-ratings-20-million-viewers-1201531579/.Google Scholar
Dezecache, Guillaume and Dunbar, R. I. M. 2012. “Sharing the Joke: The Size of Natural Laughter Groups.” Evolution and Human Behavior 33 (6): 775–9.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Dowdle, Andrew, Limbocker, Scott, Yang, Song, Sebold, Karen, and Stewart, Patrick A.. 2013. The Invisible Hands of Political Parties in Presidential Elections: Party Activists and Political Aggregation from 2004 to 2012. New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Fein, Steven, Goethals, George R., and Kugler, Mathew B.. 2007. “Social Influence on Political Judgments: The Case of Presidential Debates.” Political Psychology 28 (2): 165–92.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Heritage, John and Greatbatch, David. 1986. “Generating Applause: A Study of Rhetoric and Response at Party Political Conferences.” American Journal of Sociology 92 (1): 110–57.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Pfau, Michael, Kendall, Kathleen E., Reichert, Tom, Hellweg, Susan A., Lee, Waipeng, Tusing, Kyle J., and Prosise, Theodore O.. 1997. “Influence of Communication During the Distant Phase of the 1996 Republican Presidential Primary Campaign.” Journal of Communication 47 (4): 626.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Smith, Eliot R., Seger, Charles R., and Mackie, Diane M.. 2007. “Can Emotions Be Truly Group Level? Evidence Regarding Four Conceptual Criteria.” Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 93 (3): 431–46.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Steger, Wayne P., Dowdle, Andrew J., and Adkins, Randall E.. 2004. “The New Hampshire Effect In Presidential Nominations.” Political Research Quarterly 57 (3): 375–90.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Steinberg, Brian. 2015. “Fox News Primetime Republican Debate Snares 24 million Viewers.” August 7. Variety. http://variety.com/2015/tv/news/ratings-fox-news-republican-debate-1201559312/.Google Scholar
Stewart, Patrick A. 2011. “The Influence Of Self And Other-Deprecatory Humor On Presidential Candidate Evaluation During The 2008 Election.” Social Science Information 50 (2): 201–22.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Stewart, Patrick A. 2012. Debatable Humor: Laughing Matters On The 2008 Presidential Primary Campaign. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books.Google Scholar
Stewart, Patrick A. 2015. “Polls And Elections: Do The Presidential Primary Debates Matter? Measuring Candidate Speaking Time And Audience Response During The 2012 Primaries.” Presidential Studies Quarterly 45 (2): 361–81.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Stith, Courtney. 2016. “Center For Politics Hosts U. Va. Alumni From ‘Face The Nation’: Panelists Speak On 2016 Presidential Election.” The Cavalier Daily. April 22. http://www.cavalierdaily.com/article/2016/04/center-for-politics-hosts-university-alumni-from-face-the-nation.Google Scholar
West, Darrell M. 1984. “Cheers And Jeers: Candidate Presentations And Audience Reactions In The 1980 Presidential Campaign.” American Politics Research 12 (1): 2350.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Yawn, Mike, Ellsworth, Kevin, Beatty, Bob, and Kahn, Kim F.. 1998. “How A Presidential Primary Debate Changed Attitudes Of Audience Members.” Political Behavior 20 (2): 155–81.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Supplementary material: File

Stewart et al. supplementary material

Appendix 1

Download Stewart et al. supplementary material(File)
File 145 KB
Supplementary material: File

Stewart et al. supplementary material

Appendix 2

Download Stewart et al. supplementary material(File)
File 140 KB

A correction has been issued for this article:

4
Cited by

Linked content

Please note a has been issued for this article.

Send article to Kindle

To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

“Please Clap”: Applause, Laughter, and Booing during the 2016 GOP Presidential Primary Debates
Available formats
×

Send article to Dropbox

To send this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

“Please Clap”: Applause, Laughter, and Booing during the 2016 GOP Presidential Primary Debates
Available formats
×

Send article to Google Drive

To send this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

“Please Clap”: Applause, Laughter, and Booing during the 2016 GOP Presidential Primary Debates
Available formats
×
×

Reply to: Submit a response

Please enter your response.

Your details

Please enter a valid email address.

Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *