Not Fair!: The Typology of Commonsense Unfairness

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Editorial Reviews

In his systematic analysis of "fairness" and "unfairness," Finkel (psychology, Georgetown U.) discusses how claims of unfair treatment not only inform our judicial system but are implicit in news reports and everyday conversation. As familiar as the concepts are, however, many people confuse "fairness" with "justice" and are clearer about what's "unfair" than what's "fair." By looking at the deeper meanings underlying "unfairness narratives" volunteered by American and international study participants, Finkel creates a typology of basic unfairness categories. He explores unfairness in broad historic, religious, legal, and psychological contexts and shows how age, sex, and culture are likely to play a part in how people perceive unfairness. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781557987525
  • Publisher: American Psychological Association
  • Publication date: 4/1/2001
  • Series: Law and Public Policy Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 482
  • Product dimensions: 7.32 (w) x 10.30 (h) x 1.09 (d)

Table of Contents

Pt. I Situating Unfairness within the Psyche, Ancient Cries, and a Just World 1
1 Introduction: The Cries, and the Critics, of Unfairness 3
2 When the Just World Meets Job's World 23
3 Separating "Fair" From "Just" and "Unfair" From "Fair" 43
Pt. II Taking the Dimensions of Unfairness 63
4 What Are the Types of Unfairness! Toward a Categorization Schema 65
5 Who or What Do We Blame for Unfairnesses? 91
6 Severity, Blame, and Type of Unfairness: Do We Find Consistency or Neuroticism? 109
7 Victims of Unfairness: A Narcissistic or Empathic Story? 127
8 Do We Ever Get Over Unfairnesses? 143
Pt. III Trying to Pin Down the Variance of Unfairness 161
9 What's in a Name? Unfairness Versus Misfortune Versus Injustice 163
10 Objecting to Punishments, Sustaining Process 185
11 When the Victim is Flawed or Bears Fault 205
12 Fundamental Beliefs About Unfairness, Life, and God 223
Pt. IV Searching for Universals in a Multicultural World 233
13 Unfairness Across Lands and Beneath Cultures 235
14 Fukohei: Commonsense Unfairness in Japan 249
15 No es Justo! Commonsense Unfairness in Spain 269
Pt. V Consistencies, Contradictions, Conundrums, and Common Sense 285
16 Rectifying, Nullifying, and Softening Unfairnesses: To Err Is Human 287
17 Toward a Fair Reading of Commonsense Unfairness and Fairness 303
Author Index 323
Subject Index 325
About the Author 335
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