Rhetoric Styles and Political Affiliations During Israel’s 2013 “Facebook Elections”

Tal Samuel-Azran, Moran Yarchi, Gadi Wolfsfeld

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


In the last decade, bio-politics and psychology studies indicated a link between conservatives’ attraction to emotion-based appeals and liberals’ attraction to logic-based appeals. This study seeks to contribute to current analyses by using an innovative approach, that of Aristotelian rhetorical analysis. This study examines the rhetorical strategies used by Israel’s party leaders on Facebook and their reception during the 2013 elections. Addressing the prevalence of emotion-based appeals (pathos) versus logic-based appeals (logos), we found that left-wing leaders used more logo appeals than all other candidates whereas right-wing party leaders used the most pathos. We also found that the most shared and liked messages of right-wing candidates were mainly pathos-based ones, whereas the most shared messages of left-wing candidates were logos-based posts. The findings strengthen—from a unique perspective—the notion regarding the dominance of emotional appeals among conservatives versus the dominance of logical appeals among liberals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15-30
Number of pages16
JournalInternational Journal of Politics, Culture and Society
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Aristotelian rhetoric
  • Campaign
  • Conservative
  • Elections
  • Ethos
  • Facebook
  • Israel
  • Liberals
  • Logos
  • Netanyahu
  • Pathos
  • Yachimovitz

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Political Science and International Relations


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