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Fear and Attitudes Towards Torture and Preventive War

  • Allan C. Stam (a1), Alexander Von Hagen-Jamar (a1) and Alton B. H. Worthington (a1)

This paper examines the association between individuals' beliefs that the world is a dangerous place and their support for a variety of national security policies. We find that the source of the covariance between perceived danger and support for aggressive national security policies is primarily due to a common genetic factor. Latent genetic factors that influence individuals' perception of danger also appear to influence their positions on policies purported to alleviate such danger. Covariation between individuals' experiences and genes suggests that priming messages alone do not drive the covariation between feelings of danger and acceptance of policy changes.

Corresponding author
Address for Correspondence: Allan C. Stam, Department of Political Science, University of Michigan, 505 S. State Street, Ann Arbor MI 48109-1045. Email:
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Twin Research and Human Genetics
  • ISSN: 1832-4274
  • EISSN: 1839-2628
  • URL: /core/journals/twin-research-and-human-genetics
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