How citizens attribute blame for electoral violence: regional differences and party identification in Turkey

TOROS E., Birch S.

SOUTHEAST EUROPEAN AND BLACK SEA STUDIES, vol.21, no.2, pp.251-271, 2021 (SSCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 21 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/14683857.2021.1915642
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, IBZ Online, International Bibliography of Social Sciences, Historical Abstracts, Humanities Abstracts, Index Islamicus, Political Science Complete, Public Affairs Index, Sociological abstracts, Worldwide Political Science Abstracts
  • Page Numbers: pp.251-271
  • Keywords: Electoral violence, Media, Content Analysis, Turkey
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


Recent work on elections in unconsolidated democracies and electoral authoritarian states has identified violence a problem that commonly afflicts electoral processes. Yet there is still little understanding of citizen reactions to violent acts and how voters attribute blame for attacks, intimidation, forceful obstruction of campaign activities and other violations of electoral peace. This paper aims to add to the growing micro-level literature on the dynamics of electoral violence by providing evidence of factors that shape regional heterogeneity in reactions to this phenomenon. Taking as our frame of reference the 2018 Turkish presidential elections, we probe the role of party identification and region of residence in conditioning blame attribution, separately and in combination. We find that the process of blame attribution is shaped by party identification, but that this effect is highly dependent on the regional context.