Assessing the Internal Validity of Image Theory in the Context of Turkey-U.S. Relations



This research examines propositions of international image theory in the context of Turkey-U.S. relations. Study 1 derives and tests hypotheses regarding the interrelationships among theory components—perceived strategic relations, images, and behavioral tendencies. In addition, it extends image theory research by examining (1) the role of emotions, as well as (2) how variations in the strength of ingroup identifications (national and religious identity) inform our understanding of international images. Study 2 extends the findings of Study 1 by considering different dimensions of cultural status (cultural heritage vs. modernity) and by differentiating two targets of emotion: the U.S. government versus American citizens. Evidence is provided regarding the need for incorporation of emotions and group identifications onto the image theory framework. The results point to the need for more investigation of images and their relationships with other components of the theory in various intergroup contexts.