Pub. date: 2011 | Online Pub. Date: October 04, 2011 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412994163 | Print ISBN: 9781412959636 | Online ISBN: 9781412994163| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Mariano Torcal and Paolo Moncagatta
The concept of political support was initially devised by David Easton in the context of his theory of political systems. According to Easton (1965), political systems have inputs and outputs, with inputs taking the form of demands and support. Political support occurs when “A acts on behalf of B or when he orients himself favorably toward B” (p. 159). A more precise definition was provided by this author in a later work where he defines political support as the “way in which a person evaluative orients himself to some object through either his attitudes or his behaviour” (1975, p. 436). Easton develops a multidimensional conceptualization of political support in which he distinguishes both between the objects of support and the types of support. Within the first, he differentiates from each other support for three distinct objects: the political community, the regime, and the authorities. Within types, he distinguishes between As ...