How does college affect a student's political outlook? It is so tempting to take a faculty-eye view of the process of socialization (the effects of curricula,faculty views, field of specialization), or a grosser view of the effects of intellectual effort, or even a personalistic view of the effects of psychological traits,that one can easily omit the central and changing nature of the student's own purposes and partially-understood struggles. The author argues that political socialization in college depends very substantially on the nature of the student's life struggles at the time, especially his continuing conflict with his absent father, his struggle to achieve some particular mode of accommodation with his fellow students, and his struggle with himself on his own self-image. He examines some of the findings on political change associated with college life and some of the factors associated with these changes, then examines some case material on political development as reported by the students themselves,and finally suggests some more general reflections on political socialization in college, reflections which have a bearing on the high school years as well.

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