Birth Order and Political Behavior

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University Press of America, 1996 - Political Science - 159 pages
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This book provides a careful examination of the possible influence of birth order on political achievement and behavior. The authors look at American presidents, Supreme Court justices, United States senators and representatives, and the careers of an entire West Point class. For a comparative dimension, they also study British Prime Ministers, U.N. Secretaries General, post-Renaissance popes, leaders of the U.S.S.R., and great generals through the ages. What the authors find is that there is no measurable relationship between birth order (and being first born) and political achievement and behavior. These findings cast considerable doubt on the long standing belief that birth order has an important impact on either achievement or behavior. The authors clarify that very few studies suggesting such a relationship do not stand up under careful scrutiny. This basic conclusion and other curious findings from the study make Birth Order And Political Behavior insightful reading for almost any behavioral scientist. The book will also be relevant to courses in child development, clinical psychology, psychiatry, political science, anthropology, and sociology.
 

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Contents

Where We Started
3
Clearing the Underbrush
9
Birth Order and American Political Elites
21
Presidents
23
Supreme Court Justices
39
Senators and Representatives
57
Military Achievement West Point Graduates A Case Study
63
Other Countries Other Times Other Political Elites
71
Selected Foreign Elites The Soviet Leadership United Nations Secretaries General and PostReformation Popes
83
The Great Generals in History
89
Where We Came Out
97
To Kill A Vampire
99
Birth Order Theory
107
References
121
Index
147
Copyright

British Prime Ministers A Second Look
75

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About the author (1996)

Albert Somit is Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus of the University of Chicago. Alan Arwine is Lecturer at Southern Illinois University. Steven Peterson is Professor of Political Science at Alfred University.

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