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Volume :1 Issue : 5 2021      Add To Cart                                                                    Download

Psychological Anxiety, Conspiracy Beliefs,and the Media Impact on Fears During the Corona Pandemic

Auther : Jehad AlaaAldeen Fisal Abdulfattah Maher Abu Hilal Hamzah Dodin Muna Albahrani Adnan AlOtoom

Objective: The study sought to detect the conspiracy beliefs regarding the Arab citizens' explanations of the causes of the Corona pandemic, and whether these beliefs are related to the psychological anxiety triggered by the pandemic. The study also investigated the effect of media messages in arousing fears related to the pandemic. Methodology: During the period from April 25 to May 17, 2020, a total of 1692 Arab citizens participated in the study, and an electronic self-report questionnaire was used to obtain responses related to explanations of the causes of the pandemic, anxiety, and the impact of media in arousing individuals' fears. Results: The results showed that 45% of the participants believed that the cause of the pandemic was human-made, and that the vast outbreak of the disease was due to the countries' poor attention to health care. The belief that the pandemic was orchestrated by major countries was evident; females, and people aged 18-30 were more likely to believe in the conspiracy theory. The multiple regression analysis revealed that the beliefs underlying the explanation of the spread of the coronavirus contributed towards predicting the psychological anxiety related to the pandemic. Surprisingly, "social media" didn't reduce the public's fears but rather increased the fears of many people. Conclusion: Both the beliefs in conspiracy theory and the social media seem to be linked with increased anxiety. The results encourage further thorough exploration into the causes and sources of the beliefs in conspiracy theory and social media in developing and diminishing fears of pandemics.
Keywords: Psychological Anxiety, Conspiracy Beliefs, Media, Fears, Corona Pandemic

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Aug 09, 2020

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