Public opinion theory and research are becoming increasingly significant in modern societies as people's attitudes and behaviors become ever more volatile and opinion poll data becomes ever more readily available. This major new Handbook is the first to bring together into one volume the whole field of public opinion theory, research methodology, and the political and social embeddedness of polls in modern societies. It comprehensively maps out the state-of-the-art in contemporary scholarship on these topics.

With over fifty chapters written by distinguished international researchers, both academic and from the commercial sector, this Handbook is designed to:

Give the reader an overview of the most important concepts included in and surrounding the term ‘public opinion’ and its application in modern social research; Present the basic empirical concepts for assessing public opinion and opinion changes in society; Provide an overview of the social, political and legal status of public opinion research, how it is perceived by the public and by journalists, and how it is used by governments; Offer a review of the role and use of surveys for selected special fields of application, ranging from their use in legal cases to the use of polls in marketing and campaigns.

The SAGE Handbook of Public Opinion Research provides an indispensable resource for both practitioners and students alike.

Popular Communication and Public Opinion

DebraMerskin and Jonathan DavidTankel

The study of popular communication and culture is, by definition, an examination of public opinion. Cultural studies scholars investigate how publics (audiences) negotiate the symbolic world of mass media and express opinions (preferences) through the adoption, consumption or rejection of and resistance to popular culture. The symbolic nature of mass media content, the influence of media corporations, and the subjectivity of audiences are the key concerns of this perspective. The artifacts, practices, and experiences of popular communication are incorporated into daily life. In this way, a cultural perspective views public opinion in terms of how lived experience is expressed and interpreted by those studied. Cultural studies as a method provides public opinion research with an interpretive lens ...

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