An Analysis of Spousal Similarity in Political Attitudes in Taiwan





Published date: 

June, 2018


Kuang-hui Chen


This article is designed to assess whether husbands and wives have similar political attitudes in Taiwan. A telephone survey was conducted in June 2011, and a nationally representative sample was obtained with 354 pairs of husbands and wives being successfully interviewed. This paired survey data set was then analyzed to examine whether there existed a gender gap with regard to how people respond to suvery questions on political issues. Furthermore, the observed similarity between husbands and wives was explained by the couples' marital characteristics that mainly focused on their frequencies and intensity of interactions as well as their ethnic background and educational attainment, which represented the lasting effect of early political socialization. It was found that couples in Taiwan have a certain amount of agreement in regard to their political attitudes. It was also found that ethnic background and discussions about politics between husbands and wives are positively related to spousal similarity in political attitudes. It was therefore concluded that although spousal similarity is shaped by both pre-marital as well as post-marital factors, most of the observed similarity already existed before marriage.