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Social psychological perspectives on the legitimation of social inequality: Past, present and future

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... System justification tendencies can be activated by system inevitability, which occurs when a system is experienced as unavoidable. Individuals who feel that the social, economic, and political systems are inevitable and unchangeable are more likely to justify these systems (Costa-Lopes, Dovidio, Pereira, & Jost, 2013;Jost, Gaucher, & Stern, 2015). In terms of economic inequality, people have a strong inclination to legitimize the economic system and see it as natural and necessary (Costa-Lopes et al., 2013). ...
... Individuals who feel that the social, economic, and political systems are inevitable and unchangeable are more likely to justify these systems (Costa-Lopes, Dovidio, Pereira, & Jost, 2013;Jost, Gaucher, & Stern, 2015). In terms of economic inequality, people have a strong inclination to legitimize the economic system and see it as natural and necessary (Costa-Lopes et al., 2013). Individuals who legitimatize inequality tend to tolerate inequality (García-Sánchez et al., 2019;Willis et al., 2015). ...
... inequality (e.g., a scale on perceptions of inequality, situational exposure to inequality; Sands, 2017;Schmalor & Heine, 2021), because different operationalizations of inequality may yield distinct findings. The current finding on how the legitimation of inequality reduces perceived inequality is in line with system justification theory (Costa-Lopes et al., 2013;Jost, 2019), indicating that legitimation is an important psychological antecedent of perceived inequality. People facing societal inequality can rationalize and justify unequal environments to be less affected by inequality. ...
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Past studies have mostly focused on investigating actual economic inequality with less work devoted to understanding perceived economic inequality and its antecedents. However, numerous studies have shown that perceived inequality is a strong predictor of psychological, political, and social outcomes and hence is an important outcome in and of itself. This paper aims to identify the socioecological (i.e., actual inequality) and psychological (legitimation and fairness considerations) antecedents of perceived economic inequality. We hypothesized that individuals who legitimized income inequality would perceive less inequality, whereas individuals who experienced unfairness engendered by income inequality would perceive more inequality. We utilized a nationally representative sample in China (N = 33,600 respondents nested within 25 provinces) and conducted multilevel longitudinal analyses to test our hypotheses. In line with our predictions, we found that legitimation of inequality was associated with less perceived inequality six years later, whereas unfairness was associated with more perceived inequality six years later. In addition, we found that in more unequal areas, people perceived less income inequality. These longitudinal effects were robust when controlling for prior years of perceived inequality, economic development, and sociodemographic factors. Findings have implications for system justification and economic inequality theories.
... The philosophical interpretation of legitimacy reveals that basic ideas of this concept denote a human belief in the appropriation and justification of authorities and institutional arrangements. In the modern social sciences, an increasing number of social psychologists have incorporated the dimension of political philosophy into their theorizing about legitimacy, and have interpreted legitimacy as a psychological property of humans in which they feel they ought to defer to certain rules and decisions (e.g., Tyler, 1997Tyler, , 2006aCosta-Lopes, Dovidio, Pereira, & Jost, 2013). In other words, legitimacy emphasizes how people feel and think about certain rules and norms. ...
... Legitimation, refers to the processes by which authorities, institutions, and social arrangements are justified as meeting norms, rules, and standards (Costa-Lopes et al., 2013). Legitimation thus can be described as a characteristic of being legitimized within a framework through which something is believed just and proper (Tyler, 2006a). ...
... Searching for a recognizably appropriate form of identity is crucial in legitimation construction, as identity signifies a collective reconciliation of conflicting needs for assimilation and differentiation (Pedersen & Dobbin, 2006). The fact is that humans are more willing to comply with a justifiably recognized subject, even though they have to concede what they should have been granted to a certain extent (see also: Costa-Lopes et al., 2013). ...
Thesis
Die Dissertation versucht herauszufinden, ob Ungleichheiten im reformierten China aus dem vergangenen staatssozialistischen System heraus reproduziert werden und wie in diesem Falle diese Reproduktion von Ungleichheit funktioniert. Die soziokulturelle Perspektive erlaubt eine Interpretation von Ungleichheit als ungleiche Verteilung symbolischen Kapitals, was konkret heißt, dass die strukturelle Ursache für Ungleichheit in der symbolischen Vermittlung menschlichen Handelns liegt. Die symbolische Vermittlung über den Habitus wurde von Pierre Bourdieu systematisch untersucht, um die Funktionsweise der Reproduktion von Ungleichheiten zu erklären. Als Ausdruck der Logik menschlichen Handelns, welches durch Wissen und Erfahrung in einer symbolischen Welt entsteht, organisiert der Habitus das menschliche Handeln, um die Bedingungen seines Entstehens zu reproduzieren. Im Falle Chinas seit Beginn der Reformpolitik sind Hierarchien des staatssozialistischen Systems in Form von post-transformativen symbolischen Ungleichheiten erhalten geblieben. Diese Strukturen werden in der Dissertation als eine sozialistische Soziokultur definiert, die menschliches Handeln im veränderten Umfeld des Marktes vermittelt. Die sozialistische hierarchische Ordnung differenziert chinesische Bürger entlang der Trennlinien sozialistischen symbolischen Kapitals. Die Ergebnisse der multiple correspondence analysis zeigen, dass sowohl im Kontext des urbanen als auch des ländlichen Chinas die Beständigkeit des staatssozialistischen hierarchischen Systems eine wichtige Rolle für die heutige soziale Struktur spielt. Auf den Ergebnissen der quantitativen Forschung, die menschliches Handeln wird in der meritokratischen Gesellschaft durch sozialistische hierarchische Vermächtnisse symbolisch ausgehandelt. Gleichzeitig funktioniert die Persistenz des Habitus des staatssozialistischen hierarchischen Systems als unsichtbarer Mechanismus der Reproduktion von Ungleichheiten im China der Reformpolitik.
... SIT argues that legitimation is a key mechanism for perpetuating the authority of the privileged while reducing resistance from nondominant groups (Costa-Lopes, Dovidio, Pereira, & Jost, 2013). The most dominant legitimizing discourse the student reflections uncovered pertained to disease and hygiene. ...
... Second, our findings establish that making marginalized worker subjectivities invisible allows for the perpetuation of inequalityfor how can what cannot be seen, felt, or heard be given recognition and legitimation (Butler, 2004)? Hence, we argue that rendering certain subjectivities invisible through their cultural enactment in myriad discursive and ritualistic practices contributes to the reification of social inequality (Costa-Lopes et al., 2013). ...
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In this article, we study the nexus between class privilege and social inequality through management education. To do so, we conducted a set of exercises with management students at an elite private business school located in the Global South (i.e., Pakistan) with the specific intent to invoke reflexivity among these students about their own class privilege. These exercises prompted students of elite socio-economic backgrounds to consider how they relate to toilet cleaners—those untouchables doing the most culturally stigmatized of work in Pakistani society. Drawing on the findings from the exercises, in this study we sought to answer two interrelated questions. First, how is class privilege enacted to reproduce social inequality through discursive identity-making processes by which they make sense of self and other? Second, what are the possibilities for reflexivity in business school settings to disrupt, or otherwise undo, the cultural taken-for-grantedness of class privilege? By juxtaposing these two questions against the toilet as the empirical location, we illuminate the subversive power of knowledge that is produced at the most marginal of sites. This study identifies pedagogical trajectories through which to move towards redressing social inequality in the Global South specifically, and contributes to important debates in the field of critical management education on the significance of reflexivity more broadly.
... We contend that analysis of the role of such values and beliefs in the context of criminal organisations is useful because it may help shed light on the psychological basis of secret power across multiple contexts and groups. Research in psychology has examined the processes underpinning individuals' legitimisation of social and political institutions (e.g., Costa-Lopes, Dovidio, Pereira, & Jost, 2013;Jost, 2018;Jost, Federico, & Napier, 2009;Tyler, 2006). However, this research has mostly focused, implicitly or explicitly, on systems of governance rooted in the legal authority of the state (Tyler, 2006). ...
... Relationships based on unequal distribution of resources among groups and individuals are one of the four elementary forms of sociality, according to Fiske (1992)'s Relational Model Theory. The perpetuation of inequality in social arrangements depends on the acquiescence of and tacit legitimisation by those who are part of these arrangements (Costa-Lopes et al., 2013). A vast body of research in psychology has examined the psychological underpinning of individuals' willingness to legitimise unequal arrangements in society. ...
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Criminal organisations have the ability to exert secret power – governance over the community and inhibition of opposition (omertà). Traditionally, omertà has been attributed to fear or passivity. Here, a model grounded in different premises, Intracultural Appropriation Theory (ICAT), stresses the central role of culture in sustaining relations of domination between groups. Specifically, ICAT contends that non-state agents achieve legitimacy among people by claiming to embody cultural values shared within the community. In the case of Italian organised crime, criminal organisations’ adherence to values of masculine honour bestows legitimacy on their actions, enabling them to exert secret power. We report evidence in support of this proposition, and derive a new formulation of omertà focussing on social identity, emotions and social change beliefs. We suggest that the theory contributes to a new perspective for the analysis of culture, political action, and honour, and that it should generalise in other contexts and countries.
... There is a possibility that the above feature attached to the distinction between regular and non-regular employment in Japan is a factor of the reproduction of the large income gap between the two types of employment. Rewards inequalities can persist only when they are properly legitimized in modern societies, which emphasize the value of equality (Costa-Lopes et al., 2013). Based on this perspective, the income gap between regular and non-regular employment can remain unresolved because it is legitimated by the assumed difference in job conditions, such as duties and responsibilities, to a greater extent in Japan than in other countries. ...
... Income inequalities tend to remain unresolved when they have the logic of legitimation (Costa-Lopes et al., 2013). Based on the analysis in this paper, the income inequality between regular and non-regular employment in Japan has a stronger logic of legitimation under the Japanese employment system and, therefore, is more likely to persist than its Korean counterpart. ...
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Why does Japan have a large earnings gap between regular and non-regular employment? We attempt to answer this question through the lens of the legitimation of inequality, assuming the possibility that the inequality remains unresolved because it is legitimized due to institutional settings in Japanese society. In this paper, we explore to what extent the inequality is legitimized, as well as how it is legitimized, in Japanese society by analyzing data collected from a comparative vignette survey on the just income of fictitious workers in comparison with South Korea and the United States. The results of multilevel model analysis show that the income gap between regular and non-regular employees is accepted as just in Japan and South Korea. Moreover, non-regular worker respondents think that the income gap should be wider than regular worker respondents do (against their own interests) only in Japan. To some extent, the acceptance of income inequality and its over-acceptance by non-regular workers can be explained by the assumed difference in the duties and opportunities in the workplace between regular and non-regular employees, which is brought about by the male breadwinner model and Japanese firms' practices to secure the livelihood of employees and their families. Based on the results, we argue that the income inequality between regular and non-regular employment in Japan has a stronger logic of legitimation and, therefore, is more likely to persist than in other countries.
... Second, according to research concerning inequality (Hurst, Gibbon, & Nurse, 2016;Kim & Park, 2017;Turner, 1986), this concept can be divided into the equality of opportunity and inequality of outcomes. Since meritocratic belief assures the equality of opportunity in terms of fairness to people (Costa-Lopes, Dovidio, Pereira, & Jost, 2013;Janmaat, 2013;Reynolds & Xian, 2014;Roex et al. 2019), our hypothesized concept is related more to inequality of opportunity; however, future research needs to investigate which inequality affects the individuals' temporal orientation. ...
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Economic inequality is worsening worldwide and is associated with various social problems. Although research on inequality has been conducted in various academic fields, research on how perceived inequality affects individual decision making is relatively limited in the marketing field. Recognizing this gap, this study examines how perceived economic inequality can affect individual behavior and decision making from the perspective of time frame. The results of four studies reveal that perceived economic inequality can induce present‐oriented behavior and suggest that perceived economic mobility accounts for this relationship. This study demonstrates that present‐oriented and shortsighted behaviors, which are usually considered characteristics of the poor, can occur due to the perceptions of the environment beyond class. It implies that the macro level of economic inequality can influence an individual's decision making at the micro level.
... Unlike many other interventions designed to promote women in academia (e.g., special training, mentoring) that use a fix the women approach, women quotas represent a fix the system approach, that is, women quotas aim to change universities at an organizational level (Burkinshaw and White, 2017). This may make attitudes toward women quotas susceptible to system justifying motives (Costa-Lopes et al., 2013). System justification is the justification and rationalization of existing inequalities (e.g., favoring high-status groups over low-status groups; Jost and Banaji, 1994). ...
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In this study, we analyze the free verbal associations to the stimuli women quotas and men quotas of 327 medical students. Women and men quotas are characterized by the same modus operandi (i.e., preferential treatment based on sex/gender). However, women quotas help a low-status group, whereas men quotas help a high-status group. In line with a support paradox, that is, the perception that support for women is less fair and less legitimate than support for men, we expected that students would reject women quotas in academia more vehemently than men quotas. Specifically, we hypothesized that students would have more negative and more emotional associations with women quotas than men quotas. As predicted, students had more negative associations with women quotas than with men quotas. However, students did not have more emotional associations with women quotas than with men quotas. In addition, we explored the semantic content of the free associations to identify specific concerns over each quota. Students perceived women quotas as counterproductive, derogatory, and unfair, whereas they perceived men quotas as beneficial and fair. Concerns over the negative perceptions of quota beneficiaries were associated more frequently with women quotas than men quotas. Potential factors underlying students’ perceptions of both quotas are discussed.
... Instead, since individuals are motivated to appear as not prejudiced, they explicitly evaluate white targets more negatively than black targets when believing that prejudiced attitudes are being evaluated, while implicitly discriminating against blacks when they do not think that prejudiced attitudes are being evaluated [28]. In fact, research within the framework of the aversive racism theory [29] has demonstrated that prejudiced individuals avoid discriminating against black people in situations where recognition of prejudiced motivation for discrimination is obvious, but they still discriminate when it is socially appropriate, i.e., in situations in which normative responses are less clearly delineated insofar as they can be justified based on a factor other than race [30,31]. That is, prejudiced people behave in accordance with their prejudice in the presence of a facilitating factor for discrimination, focusing on a non-racial attribute to make biased judgments about other people [25]. ...
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Black and poor people are more frequently convicted of committing crimes. However, the specific role played by skin color and social class in convicting a person has yet to be clarified. This article aims to elucidate this issue by proposing that belonging to a lower social class facilitates the conviction of black targets and that this phenomenon is because information about social class dissimulates racial bias. Study 1 (N = 160) demonstrated that information about belonging to the lower classes increases agreement with a criminal suspect being sentenced to prison only when described as being black. Furthermore, Studies 2 (N = 170) and 3 (N = 174) show that the anti-prejudice norm inhibits discrimination against the black target when participants were asked to express individual racial prejudice, but not when they expressed cultural racial prejudice. Finally, Study 4 (N = 134) demonstrated that lower-class black targets were discriminated against to a greater degree when participants expressed either individual or cultural prejudice and showed that this occurs when racial and class anti-prejudice norms are salient. The results suggest that social class negatively affects judgments of black targets because judgment based on lower class mitigates the racist motivation of discrimination.
... Thus, prejudice can be considered as the result of power relations between majority and minority groups, either through the hierarchy belief or the perception that groups should or should not have their rights guaranteed. Recent research show how social inequalities based on prejudiced attitudes can be justified by a legitimation complex process (Costa-Lopes, Dovidio, Pereira, & Jost, 2013). ...
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Resumo O presente estudo buscou analisar como a percepção do escopo de justiça, a partir da influência da posição grupal, pode ser utilizada para legitimar a exclusão social. Participaram 103 estudantes universitários com idade entre 18 e 30 anos (M = 20,44, DP = 1,98). O estudo foi composto por duas condições experimentais: os participantes justificavam a situação colocada por uma condição experimental (restrição do escopo de justiça) ou controle (observadores) por meio de questionários. Realizou-se a análise de conteúdo das justificativas encontradas. Os resultados mostraram que, na condição de restrição, aconteceu a legitimação da posição hegemônica do grupo dominante através de discursos meritocráticos. No grupo controle, os participantes percebiam a desigualdade social e sugeriam ampliar o escopo de justiça, ou seja, não-restrição de direitos para determinados grupos. Dessa forma, identifica-se o uso estratégico de argumentos de justiça como a ampliação/restrição do escopo de justiça para justificar as desigualdades sociais de acordo com determinada posição grupal.
... The SDS-17 is similar to the Marlowe-Crowne Social Desirability Scale (Crowne and Marlowe 1960) but, whereas the Marlowe-Crowne scale reflects social standards from the 1950s, the SDS-17's content is more up-to-date. We included a measure of social desirability because social norms have increasingly deemed prejudicial attitudes inappropriate (Costa-Lopes et al. 2013) and previous research has found an association between social desirability and attitudes toward trans people (Gerhardstein and Anderson 2010;Tebbe and Moradi 2012;Wang-Jones et al. 2017). Therefore, including SDS-17 scores in our analyses allowed us to statistically account for participants' socially desirable responding and more stringently test our hypotheses. ...
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Trans people are targeted with widespread prejudice and discrimination in the United States. In order to better understand this hostility, we examined how different gender beliefs (gender traditionalism, gender self-esteem, feminist attitudes, and feminist identity) are associated with cisgender heterosexual individuals’ trans prejudice. We found that cisgender heterosexual men reported more trans prejudice, more gender traditionalism, less feminist attitudes, and a weaker feminist identity than cisgender heterosexual women. Participants who reported less traditional gender beliefs and more feminist attitudes reported less trans prejudice. Although feminist identity was not associated with trans prejudice for cisgender heterosexual women, cisgender heterosexual men who more strongly identified as feminists reported less trans prejudice. These findings underline the complexity and multiplicity of gender beliefs and their distinct associations with trans prejudice. Our results also have implications for clinicians and feminist activists, calling on them to critically examine their own gender beliefs and to advocate for the inclusion of trans people within their respective contexts, as well as trans rights more broadly.
... Al respecto, una primera posibilidad es que la preferencia por la meritocracia funcione como una ideología consensualmente compartida por los miembros del sistema social que justifica la distribución de bienes o elementos valorados positivamente(Lane, 1986). En especifico, consistiría en un mito legitimador promotor de la jerarquía social, ya que proveería justificaciones morales y racionales para la opresión y la desigualdad social, las que serían sostenidas por las personas debido a una tendencia general a ordenar a la sociedad en grupos jerárquicos(Costa-Lopes et al., 2013). Una segunda forma de entender la relación entre meritocracia y justificación de la desigualdad es la del interés racional, que plantea que quienes se encuentran en una situación actual de privilegio presentarían mayores niveles de preferencia y percepción de meritocracia como una forma de justificar su actual estatus en base a su esfuerzo y su intelecto(Kunovich y Slomczynski, 2007). ...
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The idea of meritocracy is related to the distribution of goods and rewards based on individual talent and effort, being a principle that legitimizes the unequal distribution of resources in modern societies. Despite the constant references to meritocracy in inequality and stratification research, there are still few conceptual and empirical attempts to understand to what extent individuals perceive and prefer meritocracy, as well as their consequences. The present research proposes a conceptual and empirical framework for studying meritocratic perceptions and preferences, which is then related with economic inequality variables. Using data from the Chilean survey “Social justice and citizenship participation”, the analyses suggest that meritocratic perceptions and preferences are different constructs and that those perceiving an adequate functioning of meritocracy also perceive less economic inequality.
... Las ideologías que justifican la desigualdad son un sistema de creencias que explican y dan sentido al sistema social, proporcionando una lógica específica para comprender las diferencias de autoridad, poder, status y riqueza (Costa-lopes, Dovidio, Pereira y Jost, 2013;Tyler, 2006). Estas ideologías legitimadoras de la desigualdad se componen de una serie de justificaciones o "mitos" (Major, 1994;Sidanius y Pratto, 2001) que conducen a las personas a percibir las autoridades, instituciones y demás sistemas sociales -político, económico, etc.-como correctos, justos, normativos y moralmente apropiados (Tyler, 2006). ...
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El objetivo de este documento es presentar algunas consideraciones conceptuales y metodológicas para el desarrollo de una agenda de investigación sobre la percepción de la desigualdad económica desde una perspectiva psicosocial. Para ello, discuto cuatro momentos claves donde como investigadores/as debemos tomar decisiones fundamentales que determinaran los resultados de la investigación: 1) conocer los antecedentes del fenómeno (e.g., social, político, económico); 2) identificar la relevancia social y científica; 3) conceptualizar y operacionalizar el fenómeno de estudio; 4) discutir la teoría a partir de nuestros resultados para avanzar en la comprensión del problema y generar nuevas preguntas. Estos cuatro momentos son desarrollados específicamente para el caso de la investigación de la percepción de la desigualdad económica desde una perspectiva psicosocial, presentando ideas y propuestas para continuar avanzando en esta línea de trabajo.
... Al respecto, una primera posibilidad es que la preferencia por la meritocracia funcione como una ideología consensuada por los miembros del sistema social que justifica la distribución de bienes o elementos valorados positivamente (Lane 1986). En específi-co, consistiría en un mito legitimador promotor de la jerarquía social, ya que proveería justificaciones morales y racionales para la opresión y la desigualdad social, las que serían sostenidas por las personas debido a una tendencia general a ordenar a la sociedad en grupos jerárquicos (Costa- Lopes et al. 2013). Una segunda forma de entender la relación entre meritocracia y justificación de la desigualdad es la del interés racional, la cual plantea que quienes se encuentran en una situación actual de privilegio presentarían mayores niveles de preferencia y percepción de la meritocracia como una forma de justificar su actual estatus con base en su esfuerzo y su intelecto (Kunovich y Slomczynski 2007 El segundo set de variables corresponde a estatus socioeconómico y se presenta en la tabla 2. Para ello se consideran variables de ingreso y educación. ...
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La idea de meritocracia está relacionada con la distribución de bienes y beneficios basada en el talento y esfuerzo individual, constituyendo un principio que legitima la distribución desigual de los recursos en sociedades modernas. Pese a las constantes referencias a la meritocracia en la investigación de desigualdad y estratificación social en sociología, existen pocos intentos conceptuales y empíricos que busquen entender hasta qué punto los individuos perciben y prefieren la meritocracia, así como también sus consecuencias. La presente investigación propone un marco conceptual y empírico para el estudio de las percepciones y preferencias meritocráticas que, posteriormente, es relacionado con una serie de variables relativas a la desigualdad social. Utilizando datos de la encuesta chilena “Justicia social y participación ciudadana” (N= 1.245), los resultados del análisis sugieren que las preferencias y percepciones de la meritocracia son constructos distintos y que quienes perciben un adecuado funcionamiento de la meritocracia también perciben menos desigualdad social.
... Legitimation refers to the social and psychological processes by which attitudes and behaviours are justified and perceived as appropriate, conforming to social norms, and fair. Legitimation and legitimacy are fundamental factors in interpersonal, intergroup, social and institutional functioning (for a review see Tyler, 2006;Costa-Lopes, Dovidio, Pereira and Jost, 2013;Jost and Major, 2001;White and Crandall, 2017). Legitimising ideologies of the status quo like meritocracy (e.g. ...
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Based on ESS-7 data, this paper focuses on two attitudinal dimensions about public policies related to immigration: how many can come and who can come. In this context, the hypothesis concerning the bi-dimensionality of racism was supported and, as predicted, biological racism is more anti-normative than cultural racism. Both biological and cultural racism predict opposition to immigration and adhesion to ethnicist criteria on the selection of immigrants. As hypothesised, the relationship between racism and opposition to immigration and adhesion to ethnicist criteria is mediated by threat perceptions. Specifically, symbolic and realistic threats mediate the effect of biological and cultural racism on opposition to immigration and on ethnicist criteria. The hypothesis that the mediation effects are moderated by the country’s quality of democracy was supported, indicating that the mediation effects are stronger in countries with a higher quality of democracy. Results are discussed within the context of racism theories as a bi-dimensional concept and in the framework of the role of legitimation processes in social discrimination.
... Cette croyance descriptive en la méritocratie fait alors partie des mythes de légitimation du système qui participent au maintien et à la perpétuation de la hiérarchie sociale Son Hing et al., 2011) et remplit un rôle palliatif pour les membres de groupes défavorisés (Jost et al., 2004; Les psychologues sociaux s'accordent à dire que les relations hiérarchiques construites entre les individus et/ou les groupes sociaux, tendent à rester stables. Comme l'ont montré les études décrites précédemment, la hiérarchie sociale est légitimée par les membres de groupes favorisés, mais aussi, plus paradoxalement, par les membres de groupes défavorisés (Costa-Lopes et al., 2013). Puisque la hiérarchie sociale est avantageuse pour les membres de groupes favorisés, on pourrait s'attendre à ce que sa légitimation soit plus forte par rapport aux membres de groupes défavorisés, pour qui la situation sociale est moins avantageuse (Pratto, Sidanius, & Levin, 2006;Schmitt, Branscombe, & Kappen, 2003;Sidanius & Pratto, 1999). ...
Thesis
Malgré les politiques en faveur du principe d’égalité des chances, le milieu social dans lequel évoluent les enfants influence fortement leur niveau scolaire (Observatoire des Inégalités, 2011). Ce principe implique une logique méritocratique selon laquelle chaque élève a, a priori, les mêmes chances de réussite scolaire. Or les croyances méritocratiques peuvent avoir des conséquences néfastes chez les membres de groupes défavorisés par le statu quo, notamment sur leur auto-évaluation (Shannon & Major, 2006 ; Jost & Hunyady, 2005 ; Midgley, Feldlaufer, Eccles, 1989 ; Marsh, Köller, Baumert, 2001). Pourtant, les membres de groupes défavorisés ont besoin de croire en la méritocratie pour préserver leur image de soi et/ou de leur groupe d’appartenance (Jost, Banaji, & Nosek, 2004; Kay & Friesen, 2011; Kay et al., 2009; Van Der Toorn, Tyler, & Jost, 2011). L’objectif de ce travail est d’étudier, d’une part, comment la croyance en la méritocratie scolaire peut expliquer, en partie, les inégalités sociales de réussite scolaire auprès d’élèves et d’étudiant(e)s et d’autre part, quels seraient les déterminants de cette croyance auprès d’une population étudiante et plus particulièrement auprès des étudiant(e)s défavorisé(e)s par le statu quo. Les trois premières études ont été réalisées sur des élèves d’école primaire. Une première étude (Étude 1) souligne l’existence d’un processus de médiation du lien entre le statut socioéconomique des élèves et leurs performances scolaires par l’intermédiaire de leur degré de sentiment d’efficacité personnelle (SEP). Les trois études suivantes soulignent comment la croyance en la méritocratie scolaire peut contribuer à creuser les écarts sociaux de réussite et/ou de SEP, principalement dans le domaine des mathématiques, chez des élèves d’école primaire (Études 2 et 3) alors qu’elle inverse l’écart social de sentiment de compétence classiquement observé auprès des étudiant(e)s à l’université (Étude 4). Les résultats d’une cinquième étude (Étude 5) soulignent que dans un contexte sélectif tel que l’université, les étudiant(e)s de filières de sciences non sociales croient plus en la méritocratie scolaire que les étudiant(e)s de sciences sociales mais que cet effet ne s’observe pas pour les étudiant(e)s se percevant de bas statut socioéconomique. Enfin, la dernière étude présentée dans ce travail (Étude 6) souligne que les étudiant(e)s se percevant de bas statut socioéconomique présentent une forte croyance en la méritocratie scolaire dans une condition où la sélection universitaire est rendue saillante (vs. Condition de « Réussite pour tous »), alors que cet effet s’inverse chez les étudiant(e)s se percevant de haut statut socioéconomique. L’ensemble de ces résultats est discuté au regard des définitions de l’idéologie méritocratique et de la polysémie du terme « mérite » et de l’impact de ces spécificités sur la reproduction des inégalités au sein du système éducatif, notamment par l’intermédiaire des processus de sélection.
... To my mind, this drastically misrepresents the psychology of system justification; poor people, women, and sexual minorities, among others, do not feel as if they 'played' and 'lost'. The position taken by Rubin and Hewstone (2004) and echoed by Owuamalam et al. (2018a) trivializes (and therefore seriously mischaracterizes) problems of social and economic inequalityand ignores the many ways in which inequality is legitimated in society (Costa-Lopes, Dovidio, Pereira, & Jost, 2013). I do agree that some cases of system justification are passive (and non-conscious) rather than active (and conscious). ...
... Despite evidence of the pervasive and pernicious effects of economic inequality on health, wellbeing, happiness, trust, social cohesion, and mortality (Buttrick & Oishi, 2017;Wilkinson & Pickett, 2017), inequality tends to be widely accepted, and justified (Costa-Lopes, Dovidio, Pereira, & Jost, 2013;Walker, 2014). In determining acceptable levels of economic inequality, people make use of existential standards-the current levels of national wealth and inequality that are perceived to exist. ...
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People’s desired levels of inequality are informed by the levels of inequality they perceive to exist. Perceived economic inequality is used as a reference point in determining people’s ideal level of inequality. However, recent research has suggested that the strength of this relationship depends on people’s endorsement of system-justifying beliefs. The current article extends this body of research by replicating these findings across 41 countries (N ¼ 42,078), showing the impact of system-justifying beliefs at both the individual and the societal levels. We conducted a multilevel analysis and found that the higher the endorsement of equality of opportunity beliefs—both at the individual and the societal levels—and meritocratic beliefs—at the individual level—the stronger the relationship between perceived and ideal economic inequality. These findings are in support of a motivated account of the perceived legitimacy of economic inequality.
... Recently, new forms of social action have been studied, analyzing at the same time political engagement and collective action that improves social conditions of a disadvantaged out-group (e.g. rallying to support clean water movement in third world countries) (Costa-Lopes, Dovidio, Pereira, & Jost, 2013;Thomas et al., 2011;van Zomeren, Postmes, et al., 2008). In particular the Encapsulated Model of Collective Action (Thomas et al., 2011) explains the process of a person's engagement in a collective action advantaging a disadvantaged out-group. ...
... We argued that assessment for selection relates to a meritocratic ethos whereas the assessment for learning relates to an egalitarian ethos (Autin et al., 2015). Egalitarianism and meritocratic values have contrasted consequences in terms of stereotyping and attitudes toward groups (e.g., Wyer, 2003) and are involved in the reduction/maintenance of inequalities (e.g., Costa-Lopes, Dovidio, Pereira, & Jost, 2013). The perception of egalitarian versus meritocratic values is, therefore, a possible mechanism underlying the effect of assessment for learning versus selection on the creation of a social class performance gap. ...
Article
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To understand the persistent social class achievement gap, researchers have investigated how educational settings affect lower vs. higher socio-economic status (SES) students’ performance. We move beyond the question of actual performance to study its assessment by evaluators. We hypothesized that even in the absence of performance differences, assessment’s function of selection (i.e., compare, rank and track students) leads evaluators to create a SES achievement gap. In two experiments (N = 196; N = 259), participants had to assess a test supposedly produced by a high- or a low-SES student, and used assessment for selection (i.e. normative grading) or learning (i.e. formative comments). Results showed that evaluators using assessment for selection found more mistakes if the test was attributed to a low- rather than a high-SES student, a difference reduced in the assessment for learning condition. The third and fourth experiments (N = 374; N = 306) directly manipulated the function of assessment to investigate whether the production of the social class achievement gap was facilitated by the function of selection to a greater extent than the educational function. Results of Experiment 3 supported this hypothesis. The effect did not reach significance for Experiment 4, but an internal meta-analysis confirmed that assessment used for selection led evaluators to create a SES achievement gap more than assessment used for learning, thereby contributing to the reproduction of social inequalities.
... Al respecto, una primera posibilidad es que la preferencia por la meritocracia funcione como una ideología consensuada por los miembros del sistema social que justifica la distribución de bienes o elementos valorados positivamente (Lane 1986). En específico, consistiría en un mito legitimador promotor de la jerarquía social, ya que proveería justificaciones morales y racionales para la opresión y la desigualdad social, las que serían sostenidas por las personas debido a una tendencia general a ordenar a la sociedad en grupos jerárquicos (Costa-Lopes et al. 2013). Una segunda forma de entender la relación entre meritocracia y justificación de la desigualdad es la del interés racional, la cual plantea que quienes se encuentran en una situación actual de privilegio presentarían mayores niveles de preferencia y percepción de la meritocracia como una forma de justificar su actual estatus con base en su esfuerzo y su intelecto (Kunovich y Slomczynski 2007 El segundo set de variables corresponde a estatus socioeconómico y se presenta en la tabla 2. Para ello se consideran variables de ingreso y educación. ...
Preprint
SocArxiv Preprint: https://osf.io/preprints/socarxiv/qkpu4/ The idea of meritocracy is related to the distribution of goods and rewards based on individual talent and effort, being a principle that legitimizes the unequal distribution of resources in modern societies. Despite the constant references to meritocracy in inequality and stratification research, there are still few conceptual and empirical attempts to understand to what extent individuals perceive and prefer meritocracy, as well as their consequences. The present research proposes a conceptual and empirical framework for studying meritocratic perceptions and preferences, which is then related with economic inequality variables. Using data from the Chilean survey “Social justice and citizenship participation”, the analyses suggest that meritocratic perceptions and preferences are different constructs and that those perceiving an adequate functioning of meritocracy also perceive less economic inequality.
... In Casby et al. (2016) ingroup and outgroups were generated by selecting students from two different universities. 3 Rui Costa-Lopes et al. (2013) suggest that one reason justice norms emerge is that "the fulfillment of justice standards brings with it a sense of control, predictability, satisfaction, and trust in the complexity of social interaction, and this, in turn, enhances mental and physical well-being" (page 229). For a more general discussion of how intrinsic motivation can reduce the cost of collective action, see Kyriacou (2010). ...
Book
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Governance matters for social welfare. Better governed countries are richer, happier, and have fewer social and environmental problems. Good governance implies that public sector agents act impartially. It manifests itself in the form of equality before the law, an independent and professional public administration, and the control of corruption. This book considers how economic inequality – both interpersonal and interethnic – can affect the quality of governance. To this end, it brings together insights from three different perspectives. First, a long-run historical one that exploits anthropological data on pre-industrial societies. Second, based on experimental work conducted by social psychologists and behavioural economists. Third, through cross-country empirical analysis drawn from a large sample of contemporary societies. The long-run perspective relates the inequality-governance relationship to societal responses in the face of uncertainty – responses that persist today in the guise of cultural traits that vary across countries. The experimental evidence deepens our understanding of human behaviour in unequal settings and in different governance contexts. Together, the long-run perspective and the experimental evidence help inform the cross-country analysis of the impact of economic inequality on governance. This analysis suggests the importance of both economic inequality and culture for the quality of governance and yields several policy implications.
... Therefore, this ideology may not regard the exclusion of immigrant minorities as unjust or discriminatory, but rather as a self-evident right that accompanies CPO (Merrill, 1998;Verkuyten & Martinovic, 2017). CPO can be used to define group-based hierarchies without raising moral questions, because ownership involves a consensually shared understanding about how to determine entitlements (Costa-Lopes, Dovidio, Pereira, & Jost, 2013). General senses of both personal and group entitlement are related to more negative outgroup attitudes, as they imply acceptable differences between individuals and groups (Anastasio & Rose, 2014;Blumer, 1958). ...
Article
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Political campaign slogans, such as ‘Take back control of our country’ (United Kingdom Independence Party) and ‘The Netherlands ours again’ (Dutch Party for Freedom), indicate that right‐wing populism appeals to the belief that the country is ‘ours’, and therefore, ‘we’ have the exclusive right to determine what happens. We examined this sense of ownership of the country (i.e. collective psychological ownership [CPO]) with the related determination right in relation to exclusionary attitudes and voting behaviour. Among Dutch (Study 1, N = 572) and British (Study 2, N = 495) participants, we found that CPO explained anti‐immigrant and anti‐EU attitudes, and these attitudes in turn accounted for voting ‘leave’ in the 2016 Brexit referendum in the British sample (Study 2). Additionally, CPO was more strongly related to negative immigrant attitudes among right‐wing Dutch participants, whereas it was more strongly related to negative EU attitudes and voting ‘leave’ among left‐wing British participants. CPO contributes to the understanding of critical contemporary social attitudes and political behaviour.
... This assimilationist New Laïcité appears as a cultural norm likely to be an acceptable context to release prejudice via the justification process. In fact, the notion that within a global egalitarian normative climate, individuals rely on beliefs, norms or ideologies to legitimate/justify prejudice is found in many theoretical accounts (for a review, see Costa-Lopes et al., 2013) such as classic treatments on prejudice (Allport, 1954;Gaertner and Dovidio, 1986), as well as within the System justification theory (SJT; Jost and Banaji, 1994), or even SDT (Sidanius and Pratto, 2001). However, a valuable contribution of the JSM is that it describes certain operational indicators to assign a justification function to a given factor. ...
Article
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This theoretical paper examines the context-sensitivity of the impact of cultural norms on prejudice regulation. Granting the importance of understanding intergroup dynamics in cultural-ecological contexts, we focus on the peculiarities of the French diversity approach. Indeed, the major cultural norm, the Laïcité (i.e., French secularism) is declined today in two main variants: The Historic Laïcité, a longstanding egalitarian norm coexisting with its amended form: The New Laïcité, an assimilationist norm. In fact, these co-encapsulated Laïcité variants constitute a fruitful ground to cast light on the processes underlying prejudice regulation. Indeed, it is documented that the assimilationist New Laïcité is linked to higher levels of prejudice as compared to the egalitarian Historic Laïcité. To this day, research mainly explored interindividual determinants of Laïcité endorsements and specified how these endorsements shape prejudice. Crucially, this “indirect-endorsement path” does not account for the more straightforward causal relationship between Laïcité and prejudice. Moreover, recent experimental evidence suggests that the normative salience of both Laïcité norms shape intergroup attitudes beyond personal endorsement. Therefore, in this contribution, we complement previous work by investigating the possible socio-cognitive processes driving this “direct-contextual path.” In doing so, we seek to bridge the gap of causality by investigating how the Laïcité norms can set the stage for specific regulatory strategies. Our reasoning derives from an application of the Justification-Suppression Model bolstered by classical work on mental control, modern racism and diversity ideology. From this, we sketch out the operative functioning of two distinct regulation processes: (a) one that prevents prejudicial attitudes but which can have unexpected consequences on stereotyping within the Historic Laïcité context (i.e., suppression) and (b) one that helps realize prejudice within the New Laïcité context (i.e., justification). From this analysis, we discuss the consequences for intergroup relations within and beyond the French context. In particular, we outline the importance of an adequate framing of egalitarian ideologies so that they achieve their goal to foster harmonious intergroup relations.
... In American society, graduating from a reputable university is socially desirable. Conservatives might experience more fit and enjoy a performance boost from earning social prestige because they are more likely to endorse existing social arrangements as legitimate more than liberals do (e.g., Costa-Lopes et al. 2013;Jost et al. 2004). This might play out because conservatives more strongly believe that those who are admitted to and graduate from college are truly the best students, especially when the college is selective. ...
Article
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Our study draws from research on person-environment fit to investigate how conservative and liberal students sort themselves into different academic environments, and to what extent they succeed in them. We hypothesize that the apparent influence of students’ conservatism on course choice and GPA is mediated by the nature of their ambition. Our data captured pre-college ambitions and political orientation, which were used to predict course-taking and grades over four years in a cohort of students entering a large American research university. Results show that student conservatism was related to higher endorsement of mainstream ambitions (material and career success), but lower ambitions concerning social justice, political influence, art, and science. Conservatism was also related to higher enrollment in business, engineering, and music, but lower enrollment in the arts. However, GPA in different academic disciplines did not necessarily vary as a function of student conservatism. A series of mediation models demonstrated that the statistical effects of conservatism on enrollment were mediated by students’ pre-college ambitions. Though less consistently, mediation effects emerged also for the effects of student conservatism on grades in various fields. Findings support that undergraduates’ political orientation and ambitions are linked to course-taking and college GPA. Implications for person-environment fit and the role of political orientation and ambitions in higher education are discussed along with suggestions for further research.
... Secondary victimization is a consequence of belief in a just world (e.g. De Keersmaecker et al., 2020;Mendonça et al., 2016) and is related to the legitimization of social inequalities (Costa-Lopes et al., 2013), which is an example of individuals' reluctance to promote restorative justice (e.g. Gromet & Darley, 2006). ...
Article
Sexual violence is ubiquitous in the history of human relationships, with the victim being perceived as responsible for their own misfortune. This phenomenon is labelled secondary victimization and is manifested in blaming, minimizing the suffering, and avoiding the victim. This article presents evidence of the validity of a scale that measures individual differences in these three types of secondary victimization of rape victims. In Study 1, we developed the scale items and analyzed their content validity. In Study 2, we carried out an exploratory analysis of its factorial structure and verified the set-up of the items in three theoretically predicted factors (blaming, minimizing the suffering, and avoiding the victim), which had convergent validity with the Rape Myth Acceptance Scale, and discriminant validity with the Big Five Personality Traits, in addition to having concurrent validity with the Belief in a Just World Scale (BJWS). In Study 3, we confirmed this tri-factor structure using confirmatory analysis. In Study 4, we analyzed the predictive validity of the Secondary Victimization Scale (SVS), proposing the hypothesis that secondary victimization mediates the effect of BJWS on the participants' behavior towards a rape victim. The summary of the results shows consistent evidence of the SVS’s validity.
... Second, ideologies motivate individuals to judge inequality as fair and desirable 115,128 , which might override some of the adverse effects of economic inequality. In other words, the fairness that people attribute to inequality can regulate their emotional (distress), cognitive (political attitudes) and behavioural (engaging collective actions) reactions to inequality 129 . ...
Article
Nature Reviews Psychology. You can read the paper here: https://rdcu.be/cJ0Kj ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Economic inequality might influence subjective wellbeing through psychological processes such as status competition and social distance. However, evidence for this claim is mixed. In this Perspective, we suggest that inconsistent findings arise because the psychological effects of economic inequality are driven by perceived—rather than objective—inequality. Perceived inequality is not always related to objective inequality for at least three reasons. First, unequal societies tend to be more physically and psychologically segregated, so, paradoxically, people have less contact with inequality in these societies. Second, people are more influenced by signs of economic disparities in their daily life and close circles than by information about inequality at an abstract level. Third, system-justifying ideologies lead people to perceive more or less inequality relative to objective inequality. We conclude that perceived inequality is crucial for understanding how and when objective inequality influences psychological processes and individual outcomes.
... Moreover, the new version of the GSJS can be useful to assess the effectiveness of intervention programs that consider individual positioning in the political, economic and social system (e.g., Costa-Lopes et al., 2013). In general, the use of this new version of the GSJS can help find answers about the reasons why a portion of the Brazilian population resist social change strategies, such as opposition to social policies of equal access to health (e.g., National Health Service) and income transfers (e.g., Bolsa Família -Family Grant -program). ...
Article
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System justification theory contends that people are motivated to consider the social arrangements as just, legitimate and necessary. The adequate assessment of individual differences regarding this motivation is a critical issue in this field, especially in a cultural context of profound social inequalities like Brazil. We addressed this issue by proposing an adapted and modified version of the General System Justification Scale (GSJS). In Study 1, we explored the content validity of the GSJS through expert analysis. In Study 2 (n = 305), we conducted exploratory factor analysis and found a single-factor structure. In Study 3 (n = 307), we confirmed this factorial structure. In Study 4 (n = 227), we estimated the convergent-discriminating and incremental validity of the SJS by comparing it with correlated constructs. Finally, in Study 5 (n = 100), we experimentally manipulated a news story about a high (vs. low) threat to the Brazilian system, and observed the predictive validity of the GSJS. In general, the results showed that the new version of the GSJS is a valid and reliable measure. Furthermore, they suggest the new version of the GSJS is a useful tool to measure individual differences in justification of social inequalities in a context of deep social disparities.
... Like other crises, the COVID-19 pandemic has led to contrasting perceptions and explanations, as shown by the variety of responses it has received internationally. Beyond their diversity, all responses originate from one fundamental need: understanding the reasons why things happen (Costa-Lopes et al., 2013;Lerner & Miller, 1978). This is all the more true when events are negative and unexpected (Bruckmüller et al., 2017), as is the case of the pandemic. ...
Article
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The COVID-19 pandemic is a crisis which called for two crucial modes of social regulation: social control and social solidarity. In the present pre-registered study, we examine how the perceived non-compliance with health measures relates to attitudes towards these modes of social regulation, as well as to the role played by the perception of disintegrated and disregulated society (anomie). Using data from an online cross-sectional survey conducted in Belgium in April 2020 (N = 717), results show that the causal attribution of the crisis to insufficient compliance was differentially associated with support for social control and social solidarity behaviours. Specifically, greater attribution to insufficient compliance was associated with a perceived breakdown in the social fabric (disintegration), which explained stronger support for social control and fewer solidarity-based actions. Perceived disregulation, conversely, was associated with less support for social control and more support for social solidarity. Therefore, the perception of the pandemic and associated perceived anomie tend to polarize citizens' attitudes towards these two modes of social regulation. In this way, prosocial behaviours might be inhibited by communications that attribute the pandemic's causes to incivility. Other implications of our findings for the social psychological literature on communities' reactions to the pandemic are discussed. Please refer to the Supplementary Material section to find this article's Community and Social Impact Statement.
... Our research provides new theoretical information on psychosocial processes that legitimize discrimination against minority groups. We start from an already consensual idea in the literature that prejudice and discrimination persist to be legitimized in contexts of egalitarian norms (Costa-Lopes et al., 2013). In this sense, we emphasize a psychological mechanism that plays an important role in maintaining negative attitudes and behaviors, namely, the use of justifications that seem non-prejudiced , to disguise prejudiced conduct. ...
Thesis
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Racist attitudes and behaviors have been strongly resisting the anti-racism norm. Theorizing and research on intergroup relations have shown this occurs because people use justifications to mitigate their behavior's discriminatory nature. In this respect, the literature has not yet clarified whether the simple act of justifying the racist behavior itself is sufficient to protect both the perpetrator's positive private and social image. The current thesis discusses this issue by proposing that individuals spontaneously elaborate justifications for their discriminatory behaviors against groups protected by the anti-racism norm, thus preserving their self-esteem and social image. We have developed a research program to test this hypothesis, whose results we organized into three articles. In a preliminary paper, we conducted three studies in which we assessed the validity and reliability of a self-esteem scale that we used in subsequent studies. In the second article, we conducted an exploratory study (N = 100) that showed that black people are perceived as more protected by the Brazilian context's anti-prejudice norm. In this thesis's main article, we carried out five experimental studies to test the core aspects of the proposed hypothesis. In Experiment 1 (N = 203), we show that participants accused of being racist had their implicit self-esteem affected. In Experiment 2 (N = 102), we show that the mere act of justifying racism mitigates the negative impacts on the implicit self-esteem of participants accused of racism. In Experiment 3 (N = 137), we replicated previous results in another cultural context (i.e., Spain). In Experiment 4 (N = 196), we went further by showing that the negative impact of being accused of racism occurs in managing the most egalitarian participants' social image. Experiment 5 (N = 148) analyzed the anti-prejudice norm's moderating role on the impact of being accused of racism on individuals' self-esteem. In general, the results confirm the proposed hypotheses and contribute to studies on processes that legitimize prejudice and discrimination.
... The results of the studies presented here can also contribute to expanding the boundaries of a set of social psychology theories about the processes of legitimating social inequalities, particularly system justification theory ( Costa-Lopes et al., 2013;Jost, 2019;Jost & Banaji, 1994) and social identity theory (Tajfel & Turner, 1979). Specifically, the presence of a selective national inferiority complex is consistent with the hypothesis that a desire for system justification occurs in conjunction with striving for positive distinctiveness. ...
Article
The national inferiority complex was described in 1958 by the Brazilian journalist Nelson Rodrigues as “how Brazilians voluntarily place themselves in a position of inferiority in comparison to the rest of the world.” In three experimental studies, we tested the hypothesis of a “national inferiority effect” on the behavior of Brazilian participants awarding compensation to a victim of police violence. Study 1 varied the skin color (Black vs. White) and cultural origin (Brazilian vs. African vs. European) of a target and demonstrated the presence of a selective national inferiority effect: participants awarded less compensation to the Brazilian victim than to the European, but higher compensation to the Brazilian victim than to the African, particularly when the victim was White. Study 2 replicated this effect, showing that the victim's skin color is a key factor in the emergence of the national inferiority complex. Study 3 went further and showed that the perceived injustice of an arrest mediates the national inferiority effect. The discussion suggests that the national inferiority complex could represent a compromise between positive distinctiveness and system justification motivations.
... This assimilationist New Laïcité appears as a cultural norm likely to be an acceptable context to release prejudice via the justification process. In fact, the notion that within a global egalitarian normative climate, individuals rely on beliefs, norms or ideologies to legitimate/justify prejudice is found in many theoretical accounts (for a review, see Costa-Lopes et al., 2013) such as classic treatments on prejudice Gaertner and Dovidio, 1986), as well as within the System justification theory (SJT; Jost and Banaji, 1994), or even SDT (Sidanius and Pratto, 2001). However, a valuable contribution of the JSM is that it describes certain operational indicators to assign a justification function to a given factor. ...
Book
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With increasing interconnectedness of the world, intensifying migration flows and the rise of the right-wing populism in many countries, the topic of intercultural relations has become more and more relevant. Cultural and linguistic diversity brings both opportunities and challenges by, on the one hand, enriching human communication and enhancing societies’ creative potential, and on the other hand, bringing rapid change, threatening the status quo and demanding adaptation to the new circumstances from all members of multilingual and multicultural societies.At the heart of these intercultural relations are stereotypes. Stereotyping is a cognitive mechanism that underlies all aspects of intercultural processes: the way we perceive members of other groups shapes our attitudes and behavior towards them. This position stereotypes at the beginning of a sequence of psychological processes: cognition (stereotypes); affect (attitudes); and actions (discrimination). The fundamental role that stereotypes play in attitude formation and discrimination makes them an important target for scientific inquiry.Stereotypes are complex in nature. They are affected by psychological, sociocultural, sociolinguistic and geopolitical processes, which makes the study of stereotypes relevant to researchers from various disciplinary backgrounds. A vast body of literature accumulated so far illuminates the processes of stereotype formation and activation, their content and functions, their antecedents and consequences. However, the studies of stereotypes are scattered across various research areas: social, (cross-)cultural and cognitive psychology, ethnic studies, sociology, intercultural communication and management, social neuroscience, and others. Researchers working within these areas often use different terminology and diverging theoretical and methodological approaches. The lack of integration and interdisciplinary debate hinders the development of this field of research.The current book aims to bring together researchers from different disciplinary, theoretical and methodological backgrounds to create a space for exchange and integration of ideas. We welcomed contributions on the role of stereotypes in intercultural relations, including on cultural-ecological variations in stereotyping, how ethnic stereotypes are formed and maintained, how they change and what role they play in intergroup relations, intercultural communication, and acculturation processes. We believe this collection will contribute to the convergence of these research streams and will set directions for the further development of these fields separately.
... Además, aclara que "el poder nos vuelve ciegos a nuestras propias faltas morales, pero nos mueve indignados cuando otros cometen las mismas faltas morales" (p. 131) (véanse también Costa-Lopes et al., 2013;Keltner, 2012;Keltner y Lerner, 2010;Kipnis, 1972Kipnis, , 1976Rind y Kipnis, 1999;Wang y Murnighan, 2014). ...
... The legitimation of social inequality relies on the overall belief that the current state of affairs-and other social arrangements-are appropriate, proper and just (Tyler, 2006). The formation of such beliefs are based on different, yet complementary social psychological processes, including both intergroup dynamics (e.g., prejudice, discrimination, see Durante et al., 2013), as well as individual dispositions (e.g., social dominance) or psychological motivations (e.g., system justification) (see Costa-Lopes, et al., 2013). These theoretical frameworks have provided a fertile ground to explain social inequalities focusing on specific disadvantaged minority groups (e.g., Cozzarelli, et al, 2001;Pratto et al., 2013), such as the low socioeconomic groups, ethnic/religious minorities or women. ...
Article
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This paper aims to examine the role of Belief in a Just World (BJW; Lerner, 1980) in the legitimation of economic inequality. Using data from 27 European countries (N=47,086), we conducted multilevel analyses and found that BJW positively predicted the legitimation of economic inequality, measured by three indicators: the perceived fairness of the overall wealth inequality, and the fairness of the earnings made by the Top 10% and the Bottom 10% of society. These results persisted after controlling for individual- and country-level variables. Moreover, the BJW effect was stronger on the legitimation of the Bottom 10% incomes, compared to the legitimation of the Top 10%. We also found that economic inequality at the country-level reduced the BJW effect on legitimation of inequality. Finally, BJW displayed a negative indirect effect on support for redistribution, via the legitimation of economic inequalities.
Chapter
In the previous two chapters we described our impressions of the state of the health inequity literature, as we encountered it, while we hunted for answers to the questions of why inequity is necessarily the problem it is portrayed to be, and why it has been so impervious to remedies. The field, in general, seems to be a gallimaufry of ideas, concepts, methodologies, standards, and explanations. We think this is a problem because, if there is an issue to be addressed, and if the issue is important enough that it compromises successful social living, then anything less than a unified, coherent approach will jeopardise effective resolution of the issue.
Chapter
Immigrants and refugees are today represented as a threat by a significant number of Europeans and constitute a topic that divides Governments and is at the centre of the agenda of new European extreme right-wing. This chapter presents a new approach and innovative hypotheses about the factors underlying the representation of immigrants and refugees as a threat, and their role in legitimizing discrimination, social inequalities and the development of anti-immigrant and anti-refugee public policies. Our approach is based on the hypothesis that immigrants and refugees are perceived as a threat to individual and collective life projects, particularly by those experiencing a sense of social disaffection (i.e., a generalized feeling that conjointly expresses dissatisfaction with life, perception of lack of control over life and distrust of the social system’s nuclear institutions). Using new data from the European Social Survey, we propose an analytical model specifying the correlates of threat perceptions and the mediating role of threat on the relationship between social disaffection and opposition to immigration and refugees in Europe. Results have shown that the sense of threat is related to right-wing political positioning, exclusive national identity, anti-universalistic values and, more importantly, with the sense of social disaffection. Significantly, threat perceptions play a legitimating role in the relationship between social disaffection and opposition to immigration and to hosting refugees. We further discuss the theoretical and socio-political implications of our approach to the study of threat in the context of contemporary social dynamics.
Article
System justifi cation, the system supporting attitude of masses of people at the bottom of the hierarchy and their legitimization of the social relations that are detrimental to them is a priority topic of fundamental social psychological theories studying cognition and emotions related to, refl ecting, and shaping social systems. Rich empirical data gathered from around the advanced world support John Jost's elaborate theory. In contrast, system criticism not only appears next to system justifi cation in the public thinking of the post-communist region (including Hungary), but may even prevail. Our last fi fteen years of investigations on stereotypes, attitudes, values, and social public feelings (including studies on 8 national representative samples) give an exact description of the ambivalence of system criticism and system justifi cation in present- day Hungarian thinking: dissatisfaction arising basically from the lack of social security, moral social criticism, and increased demand for democracy, as opposed to the appreciation of the economic-political situation and support for the centralization of power. It is characteristic of the Hungarian public affairs that the dominant system criticism is associated with pessimism for the future, and the subdominant system justifi cation correlates with optimism for the future. In addition to the historical-cultural interpretation of the differences in the international trends, the present paper offers suggestions for the further elaboration of the System Justifi cation Theory (considering the ambivalence of system attitudes, the differences across systems, the context of system-images, and the perceived probabilities of prospects). The present research introduced and used a so called Counterselection Scale System for the study of public feelings derived from the views on society, and a Democracy Attitude measuring tool, encompassing 3 subscales.
Article
Background: Interprofessional education is an important factor in facilitating subsequent interprofessional collaboration. Therefore, implementing this teaching strategy is important to increase the chances that future professionals will work effectively together. Group membership, status and the power differential among professional groups are factors that can hinder both interprofessional education and collaboration. From a psychosocial point of view, interprofessional education may be described as an intergroup context in which members of different status groups interact. It involves at least two main psychosocial processes: commitment to the profession and acceptance or challenge of interprofessional hierarchy. Objectives: The purpose of this research was to analyse the effects of professional commitment and social dominance orientation on attitudes toward interprofessional education. Design: A cross-sectional design was conducted. Participants: A total of 137 nursing science students from an Italian university were enrolled in this research. Methods: Participants were surveyed using a questionnaire measuring attitudes toward interprofessional education, professional commitment and social dominance orientation. Results: The more that students showed social dominance orientation, the less they were willing to engage in interprofessional education. This effect was qualified by an interaction with professional commitment. When professional commitment was higher, social dominance orientation was weakly related to attitude toward interprofessional learning. Conclusions: These results suggest that there is a belief that professional hierarchy is deserved and that this may decrease a nursing student's engagement in interprofessional education; however, this may be contrasted by an increased professional commitment.
Article
This article aimed to analyze the stereotypes attributed to "egalitarian men", understood here as men who support gender equality in relation to domestic and family responsibilities as well as inclusion in the workforce. To do so, two studies were carried out. The first study investigated the attribution of stereotypes to egalitarian men through a single open question. A total of 250 university students participated in this study, of which 51.1% were male, and their average age was 21.5 years (SD = 4.39). The second study analyzed the attribution of stereotypes to egalitarian or traditional men and women in a work context considered masculine. Participants included 221 university students with a mean age of 21.9 years (SD = 4.19), the majority (54.3%) being male. Taken together, the results of the two studies indicate that the egalitarian man is perceived as fragile and possibly homosexual. On the other hand, he is also seen as being more competent than traditional men.
Article
The number of people witnessing or experiencing gender discrimination at work is still high around the globe. While the existing literature has investigated potential mechanisms underlying gender discrimination and the consequences of experiencing gender discrimination at work, it remains unclear how third-party observers-as opposed to employees or coworkers-react to specific instances of workplace gender discrimination. The results of six experiments demonstrate that (a) people in general judge organizational decisions that discriminate against individual male (vs. female) workers as more legitimate and (b) this difference in legitimacy judgments is significantly greater among women than men. This discrepancy in legitimacy judgments occurs because women (more than men) consider the collective situation of female and male workers when judging the legitimacy of organizational decisions that discriminate against individual workers based on gender. These findings document how group-level concerns shape people's legitimacy judgments of organizational decisions discriminating against individuals and equip organizations and policymakers with a better understanding of people's polarized opinions regarding gender discrimination at the workplace. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2022 APA, all rights reserved).
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Previous research has found that individual differences in epistemic motivation predict political conservatism. However, meta-analyses indicate substantial heterogeneity in this association and such variation remains underexamined. Using a large, pre-existing dataset, we investigated whether group status—a group’s social value—modulates this relationship. We used several assessments of epistemic motivation (need for structure, need for cognition) and group status (race, gender, social class). We found that the epistemic motivation-ideology relationship was stronger for women (versus men) and for members of lower (versus higher) social class groups, although the relationship strength differences were relatively small. The relationship did not consistently vary across racial group status. Group status appears to be a small, but not consistent, moderator of the epistemic motivation-ideology relationship.
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Support for Gay Conversion Therapy may be motivated by homophobic prejudice driven by conservative groups. We propose that Support for Gay Conversion Therapy (SGCT) is motivated by conservatism and that this relationship is mediated by prejudice against gay individuals. We tested these hypotheses in three studies. In Study 1 (N = 249), we found that conservative values predict SGCT, and that this effect is partly mediated by prejudice. In Study 2 (N = 247), we replicated this mediation and found that ethical-religious and psychological essentialist beliefs differently moderated it. Study 3 (N = 210) went further by experimentally showing the political consequences of SGCT. We showed that more conservative individuals tend to absolve psychologists who practice sexual conversion, and that both prejudice and conservative-motivated SGCT mediated this effect. We discussed these results by emphasizing the psychosocial process that motivates SGCT.
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System justification theory According to system justification theory, people are motivated (to varying degrees depending upon situational and dispositional factors) to defend, bolster, and justify prevailing social, economic, and political arrangements (i.e., the status quo). System justification motivation is theorized to manifest itself in a number of different ways (e.g., in terms of stereotyping, ideology, attribution), to occur implicitly (i.e., nonconsciously) as well as explicitly, and to serve underlying epistemic, existential, and relational needs. In this chapter, we trace the historical and intellectual origins of the theory, beginning with a personal narrative of its conceptual and empirical development. We recount major influences and theoretical precursors in philosophy, social theory, and experimental social psychology. We summarize the basic postulates of system justification theory in its current state of development, highlight some illustrative evidence in support of the theory, and discuss a few of its practical consequences. Most individuals participate in an ...
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Self-regulation and bias Self-regulation has been extensively investigated as a means for changing implicit as well as explicit prejudicial biases. We first discuss motivational factors influencing regulatory inclinations, and then turn to two regulatory strategies. The first strategy involves the suppression of prejudicial biases a strategy that often backfires. The second strategy involves conflict monitoring and the exertion of regulatory control through processes described in the Self-Regulation of Prejudice (SRP) model. Empirical findings are reviewed related to the central features of the SRP model, with attention to recent advances made possible by social neuroscientific investigations. Individual difference and situational factors that can facilitate or interfere with the self-regulation of prejudice are then discussed. We conclude by highlighting critical directions for future research. All in all, we are forced to conclude that prejudice in a life is more likely than not to arouse some compunction, at least some of the time. ...
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This chapter summarizes the available evidence on twelve controversies surrounding symbolic racism, which was proposed over 30 years ago to explain new forms of racial conservatism appearing after the civil rights era. The conceptualization of symbolic racism was originally somewhat fuzzy and has evolved over time; but the measurement of it has been surprisingly constant over time; and it seems to form a substantively meaningful and statistically consistent belief system, with two highly correlated variants that differ slightly in the language they use but not in their effects. Its effects on racial politics are quite stable and consistent. It is a distinctive construct necessary for the understanding of Whites' responses to racial politics, not merely redundant with other constructs and hence disposable in the service of parsimony. It focuses on antagonism toward Blacks, which has little to do with either symbolic racism or opposition to policies targeted for Blacks.
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Three varieties of differential intergroup social allocation were examined in a sample of American students as a function of degree of in-group legitimacy, self-esteem, sex, and social dominance orientation within a standard minimal-groups experimental paradigm. The results are consistent with both social identity theory and much previous research in this area: The greater the in-group identification, the greater the allocation of social value in favor of the in-group. The results are also consistent with the expectations of social dominance theory and show that, even after the effects of gender, self-esteem, and in-group identification were considered, the greater the social dominance orientation, the greater the allocation of social value in favor of the in-group. For two of the three indexes of social value, there was a statistically significant interaction between in-group identification and social dominance orientation. Subjects showing strong acceptance of their in-group classification and who had relatively high levels of social dominance orientation displayed greater in-group bias.
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We compared implicit and explicit ingroup bias across four minority groups who ranged in status from high (Jews and Asians) to medium (overweight people) to low (poor people). Minorities relatively high in status showed more implicit ingroup bias than minorities relatively low in status. In fact, overweight and poor people showed automatic preference for the dominant outgroup (i.e., own group devaluation). The relationship between ingroup bias and perceived status was reliably positive whether based on category membership (r = .54) or minority members' own perceptions of their status (r = .36), but only at the implicit level. By contrast, explicit attitudes were negligibly correlated with status differences. In addition, dominant group members showed stronger possession of implicit ingroup bias than did minorities, but particularly as their relative status increased. In concert, the findings support system justification theory (Jost & Banaji, 1994) by showing that minorities with the least status are the most susceptible to automatic ingroup devaluation. They also suggest that motives to legitimize the status quo are predominantly nonconscious, for minorities and dominants alike.
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A new scale summarizing the central and core elements of a social representation of individual versus group-based entitlement to resourceallocations in New Zealand (NZ) is presented. Item content for the Equality Positioning Scale was drawn from qualitative analyses of the discourses of NZ's citizens, its political elites, and the media. As hypothesized, equality positioning differentiated between Pakeha (NZ European) undergraduates who supported liberal versus conservative political parties.People who positioned equality as group-based tended to support the Labour and Green parties and those who positioned equality as meritocracy tended to support the National and NZ First parties. Regression models predicting political party support in the two months prior to the 2005 NZ general election demonstrated that the effects of equality positioning on political party preference were unique, and were not explained by universal (Study 1: Big-Five Personality, Social Dominance Orientation, Right-Wing Authoritarianism, liberalism- conservatism) or culture-specific; Study 2: pro-Pakeha ingroup attitudes, support for the symbolic principles of biculturalism) indicators derived from other theoretical perspectives. Taken together, these findings indicate that the Equality Positioning Scale provides a valid and reliable measure that contributes to models of the psychological and ideological bases of voting behaviour in NZ. Moreover, our findings suggest that the positioning of equality provided an axis of meaning that aided in the creation and mobilization of public opinion regarding resource-allocations, land claims, affirmative action programs, and a host of other material issues in the months leading up to the 2005 NZ election.
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In addition to serving a hegemonic function, system-justifying ideologies serve the palliative function of enabling people to feel better about inequality. We summarize three studies supporting this proposition. In the first study, an arbitrary hierarchy was created using the "Star Power" simulation. Results reveal that system justification is associated with increased positive affect, satisfaction, and decreased negative affect, guilt, and frustration. Two additional studies demonstrate that the dampening effect of system justification on support for the redistribution of resources is mediated by reduced moral outrage but not guilt or negative affect. Implications for social change and social justice are discussed.
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This volume argues that the commitment to justice is a fundamental motive and that, although it is typically portrayed as serving self-interest, it sometimes takes priority over self-interest. To make this case, the authors discuss the way justice emerges as a personal contract in children's development; review a wide range of research studying the influences of the justice motive on evaluative, emotional and behavioral responses; and detail common experiences that illustrate the impact of the justice motive. Through an extensive critique of the research on which some alternative models of justice are based, the authors present a model that describes the ways in which motives of justice and self-interest are integrated in people's lives. They close with a discussion of some positive and negative consequences of the commitment to justice.
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Prejudice, stereotyping and discrimination: Theoretical and empirical overview This chapter has two main objectives: to review influential ideas and findings in the literature and to outline the organization and content of the volume. The first part of the chapter lays a conceptual and empirical foundation for other chapters in the volume. Specifically, the chapter defines and distinguishes the key concepts of prejudice, stereotypes, and discrimination, highlighting how bias can occur at individual, institutional, and cultural levels. We also review different theoretical perspectives on these phenomena, including individual differences, social cognition, functional relations between groups, and identity concerns. We offer a broad overview of the field, charting how this area has developed over previous decades and identify emerging trends and future directions. The second part of the chapter focuses specifically on the coverage of the area in the present volume. It explains the organization of the book and presents a brief ...
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Part I. From There to Here - Theoretical Background: 1. From visiousness to viciousness: theories of intergroup relations 2. Social dominance theory as a new synthesis Part II. Oppression and its Psycho-Ideological Elements: 3. The psychology of group dominance: social dominance orientation 4. Let's both agree that you're really stupid: the power of consensual ideology Part III. The Circle of Oppression - The Myriad Expressions of Institutional Discrimination: 5. You stay in your part of town and I'll stay in mine: discrimination in the housing and retail markets 6. They're just too lazy to work: discrimination in the labor market 7. They're just mentally and physically unfit: discrimination in education and health care 8. The more of 'them' in prison, the better: institutional terror, social control and the dynamics of the criminal justice system Part IV. Oppression as a Cooperative Game: 9. Social hierarchy and asymmetrical group behavior: social hierarchy and group difference in behavior 10. Sex and power: the intersecting political psychologies of patriarchy and empty-set hierarchy 11. Epilogue.
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Throughout our history, white Americans have singled out Afro-Americans for particularly racist treatment. Of all the many immigrant nationalities that have come to these shores since the seventeenth century, Afro-Americans have consistently attracted the greatest prejudice based on their group membership and have been treated in the most categorically unequal fashion.
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System justification theory suggests that individuals defend and rationalize aspects of prevailing social systems, especially in response to system threat. In two experiments we extend this framework by demonstrating that people rationalize small-scale social systems (e.g., local popularity hierarchies and the nuclear family) as well as large-scale social systems (e.g., American society). Furthermore, we find that system threat leads people to bolster not only the legitimacy of the social system that is directly threatened but also the legitimacy of systems at other levels of analysis. These results provide evidence of spreading rationalization, suggesting that people respond defensively to other social systems when one system that they belong to is criticized or attacked.
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Why There Is No Socialism in the United States Support for and Opposition to More Equality Norms of Distributive Justice and Three Domains of Life The Socializing Domain and the Principle of Equality The Economic Domain and the Principle of Differentiation The Political Domain and the Principle of Equality Alternative Patterns of Belief Ambivalence Political Orientations: Why the Dog Doesn't Bark Appendixes Demographic Characteristics of Respondents, 1976 Interview Questions Notes Index
Article
1. The Belief in a Just World.- 2. The First Experiment: The Effect of Fortuitous Reward.- 3. The Second Experiment: Observers' Reactions to the "Innocent Victim".- 4. The Third Experiment: The Martyred and Innocent Victims.- 5. Three Experiments That Assess the Effects of Sex and Educational Background of Observers, Experimenter and Observer Influence on One Another, and the Reactions of "Informed" and Nonimplicated Observers.- 6. Reactions to the Belief in a Just World Theory and Findings: The "Nay-Sayers".- 7. Condemning the Victimized.- 8. The Assignment of Blame.- 9. The Response to Victimization: Extreme Tests of the Belief in a Just World.- 10. Who Believes in a Just World: Dimension or Style.- 11. Deserving versus Justice.- References.
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In this paper, biological, symbolic, and aversive racism are conceptualized on the basis of their most characteristic components. In a survey of 1,760 Dutch secondary school students, the empirical basis for this conceptualization was examined. It is hypothesized that the forms of racism are steps in a single cumulative dimension of ethnic attitudes. This hypothesis is based on Myrdal's rank order of discrimination and Blumer's idea of the color line. The validity of the forms of racism is tested by relating the steps of the ethnic attitude to intentions regarding discriminatory behavior, stereotyping, and attitudes toward affirmative action. It was found that 1) the distinguished forms of racism, operationalized on the basis of literature research, were largely corroborated by our empirical data; 2) the forms of racism can be arrayed on one underlying Guttman-type dimension: and 3) egalitarians, aversive racists, ethnocentrists, symbolic racists, and biological racists scored significantly differently on the variables measuring various axpressions of prejudice.
Article
In an attempt to explain the stability of hierarchy, we focus on the perspective of the powerless and how a subjective sense of dependence leads them to imbue the system and its authorities with legitimacy. In Study 1, we found in a nationally representative sample of U.S. employees that financial dependence on one's job was positively associated with the perceived legitimacy of one's supervisor. In Study 2, we observed that a general sense of powerlessness was positively correlated with the perceived legitimacy of the economic system. In Studies 3 and 4, priming experimental participants with feelings of powerlessness increased their justification of the social system, even when they were presented with system-challenging explanations for race, class, and gender disparities. In Study 5, we demonstrated that the experience of powerlessness increased legitimation of governmental authorities (relative to baseline conditions). The processes we identify are likely to perpetuate inequality insofar as the powerless justify rather than strive to change the hierarchical structures that disadvantage them.
Article
I. Overview. Introduction. The Design of This Study. II. The Antecedents of Cooperative Behavior. Why Study Cooperative Behavior in Groups. Instrumental Motivations for Engaging in Cooperative Behavior. Internally-driven Cooperative Behavior. III. The Influence of Justice: Procedual Justice and Cooperation. The Influence of Justice Based Judgments. Procedural Justice and Cooperative Behavior. IV. The Meaning of Procedual Justice: The Four Component Model. Relational Models of Procedual Justice. A Two Component Model of Procedural Justice: Quality of Decision-making and Quality of Treatment. Creating a Four Component Model of Procedural Justice: Adding the Distinction Between Formal and Informal Sources of Justice. V. Social Identity and Cooperative Behavior: Status and Psychological Engagement. Social Identity and Cooperative Behavior. Justice and Group Status: The Antecedents of Status Evaluations. Psychological Engagement with the Group. VI. Discussion Conclusion: Understanding Group Behavior From a Non-Instrumental Perspective. VII. References. VIII. Appendices
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The belief that status in society is based on merit is a central feature of the American Dream. This belief system justifies status inequalities by locating the cause of status differences in the individual talents and efforts of group members. We hypothesized that activating meritocratic beliefs increases the extent to which individuals psychologically justify status inequalities, even when those inequalities are disadvantageous to the self. Specifically, we hypothesized that priming meritocracy prompts individuals to engage in system-justifying psychological responses when they experience threat either at the personal or group level. Across two studies, priming meritocracy led members of a low status group to justify both personal and group disadvantage by decreasing perceptions of discrimination (Studies 1 and 2) and increasing the extent to which they stereotyped themselves and their group in status-justifying ways (Study 2).
Article
According to system justification theory, people internalize and perpetuate systemic forms of inequality, even though it sometimes means harboring preferences for members of higher status outgroups. In Study 1, students from a high status (but not a low status) university exhibited significant ingroup favoritism on the IAT, an automatic evaluative measure. Furthermore, for students at the high status university, implicit ingroup bias was positively correlated with implicit self-esteem. For students at the low status university, implicit acceptance of consensual stereotypes concerning academic and extracurricular characteristics was associated with implicit outgroup favoritism. In Study 2, Latinos and Asian Americans exhibited significant outgroup favoritism on an unobtrusive behavioral measure by choosing White interaction partners over members of their own groups. In Study 3, parents named newborn children disproportionately after their fathers (compared with their mothers) and published birth announcements for boys slightly more often than for girls. Thus, we observed evidence of system justification on implicit or unobtrusive measures in three different socially disadvantaged groups.
Article
This chapter highlights the role that social comparison processes and attributions of responsibility play in translating social inequality into beliefs about personal and collective entitlement. The chapter illustrates the importance of entitlement as an explanatory construct in understanding the ways in which members of different social groups react to their socially distributed outcomes. This chapter organizes into a systematic framework current knowledge about the psychological antecedents and consequences of beliefs about entitlement. The chapter addresses the ways in which social comparison processes and attributions contribute to the development of a lesser sense of personal entitlement among members of objectively disadvantaged groups. Social comparison biases tend to prevent awareness of disadvantage, and attribution biases tend to legitimize disadvantage. As a result, what “is” has a marked tendency to become what “ought” to be. These processes are illustrated through a program of research on the origins of gender differences in personal entitlement to pay. Gender differences in entitlement are proposed to underlie the finding that women and men typically do not differ in their life, job, or marital satisfaction, despite situations at work and at home that are disadvantageous for women compared to the situations of men. The chapter considers the reason for members of other disadvantaged groups; for example, African—Americans; expressing discontent with their objectively unjust situations. The situational and personal factors that prompt people to compare with advantaged outgroups and that lead them to question the legitimacy of outcome distributions result in elevated entitlement among the disadvantaged and correspondingly higher levels of discontent.
Article
The nature of explanation in experimental social psychology is the subject of much controversy. To advance the debate, the present article provides a grid of analysis allowing a more [thorough study of experimental social psychologists] work. Four levels of explanation are distinguished as works can be seen as studying intra-individual processes (level 1), interindividual but intra-situational dynamics (level 2), effects of social position in a situational interaction (level 3) and intervention of general beliefs (level 4). An important characteristic of experimental work is the possibility of combining different levels of analysis in the same study, and of surpassing, in this way, the old dichotomy between [psychologizing] and [sociologizing] explanations. Experiments published in the first seven volumes of the European Journal of Social Psychology were explored within this framework.
Article
It is noted with regard to the submissive personality, it is visualized that this personality structure, observable in early adulthood and better explained by social learning than by psychoanalytic theory, is thought to be developed during adolescence from earlier training in obedience, conventionalism, and aggression, as modified by the individual's subsequent experiences. On the other hand, in context to authoritarian personality, authoritarians harbor many double standards and hypocrisies, without realizing it. This chapter illustrates a part of an investigation of general public opinion concerning a variety of social issues. Adult authoritarians tend to be highly ethnocentric and users of the “consensual validation pill” (Newcomb, 1961). They travel in tight circles of like-minded people, they often think their views are commonly held in society, that they are the “Moral Majority” or the “Silent Majority.” Certain kinds of religious training have sometimes helped produce their ethnocentrism and authoritarianism.