Between “Me, Myself, and I” and the “Royal We”: Gender Differences in Personalized Political Discourse on Facebook and User Involvement

Renana Atia, Meital Balmas


This study focuses on discursive personalism on social media and especially on the differences between female and male politicians. More specifically, we test discursive personalism outside of a campaign period as a predictor of social media involvement (of users). A manual content analysis of posts by female and male politicians in the context of Israeli politics (N = 1,392) shows that higher levels of personalized discourse predict a higher level of user involvement (i.e., likes, comments, shares, and aggregate engagement). Additionally, we demonstrate that, compared with posts authored by male politicians, female politicians’ communications exhibit a unique discourse style, with higher levels of discursive personalism, and, as a consequence, draw more involvement on the part of Facebook users.


political personalization, discursive personalism, Facebook, gender, content analysis

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