A Review and Analysis of Questions About the Relationship Between Fear and Persuasion

James Price Dillard


Some theories of fear appeals have predicted a curvilinear relationship between fear and persuasion, often based on the description of an overtime process. This paper reviews selected theories of fear appeals against what is known from the meta-analyses and finds that some of the theoretical questions simply cannot be addressed with existing data. Recommendations for testing linearity and curvilinearity in dynamic designs are presented.


drive model, parallel processing, EPPM, threat, fear, persuasion, latent growth curve modeling

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