The Belief in a Just World: A Fundamental Delusion

Front Cover
Springer Science & Business Media, Jun 29, 2013 - Psychology - 210 pages
The "belief in a just world" is an attempt to capmre in a phrase one of the ways, if not the way, that people come to terms with-make sense out of-find meaning in, their experiences. We do not believe that things just happen in our world; there is a pattern to events which conveys not only a sense of orderli ness or predictability, but also the compelling experience of appropriateness ex pressed in the typically implicit judgment, "Yes, that is the way it should be." There are probably many reasons why people discover or develop a view of their environment in which events occur for good, understandable reasons. One explanation is simply that this view of reality is a direct reflection of the way both the human mind and the environment are constructed. Constancies, patterns which actually do exist in the environment-out there-are perceived, represented symbolically, and retained in the mind. This approach cenainly has some validity, and would probably suffice, if it were not for that sense of "appropriateness," the pervasive affective com ponent in human experience. People have emotions and feelings, and these are especially apparent in their expectations about their world: their hopes, fears, disappointments, disillusionment, surprise, confidence, trust, despondency, anticipation-and certainly their sense of right, wrong, good, bad, ought, en titled, fair, deserving, just.
 

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.

Contents

Introduction
1
The Belief in a Just World
9
The Effect of Fortuitous Reward
31
Observers Reactions to
39
The MeasuresWhat Do You Think of the Victim?
45
The Martyred and Innocent Victims
55
Three Experiments That Assess the Effects
63
Everyone Knows We Admire Admirable Victims and Condemn
80
Some Concluding Thoughts
87
The Assignment of Blame
105
Dimension or Style
137
Deserving versus Justice
183
References
195
Copyright

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

Bibliographic information