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Families’ ValuesHow Parents, Siblings, and Children Affect Political Attitudes$
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R. Urbatsch

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199373604

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199373604.001.0001

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Girls Are from Mars, Boys Are from Venus: Children and Militarism

Girls Are from Mars, Boys Are from Venus: Children and Militarism

(p.83) Chapter 5 Girls Are from Mars, Boys Are from Venus: Children and Militarism
Families’ Values

R. Urbatsch

Oxford University Press

Children provide a link to the future and thus the more reason to pay attention to the long-term consequences of policies. War, for example, costs blood and money in the present but may have longer-term benefits; parents have some reason to be willing to make that trade-off. Of course, wars can have long-term costs as well as benefits, and expectations about those costs may differ for different children. This is particularly likely for policies that influence the military, since girls are much less likely to enlist (or be drafted) than boys. Accordingly, parents of sons have more reason to be cautious about aggressively interventionist foreign policies than parents of daughters. As this implies, parents of both sexes of children are more enthusiastic about prioritizing the long term in foreign policy, but parents of daughters are much keener on military interventions both in the abstract and in specific recent wars.

Keywords:   foreign policy, military, war, daughters, sons

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