The Ideological Underpinnings of Distributive Unfairness Evaluations: Evidence from Latin America between 1997 and 2020


This chapter aims to study distributive justice evaluations in LA over the last 23 years. We rely on distributive justice theory as a starting point, but we integrate insights from social psychology to enrich it. As such, we argue that people evaluate more unfairness when they live in contexts that are more unequal but that such an evaluation differs as a function of people’s ideologies. We examine how societal factors and ideologies shape distributive fairness evaluations to test this idea empirically. On the one hand, we examine whether distributive fairness evaluations have changed in LA over the last 23 years, and if so, how societal factors associate with such change. On the other hand, we test the extent to which ideological beliefs can explain people’s distributive fairness evaluations, that reach beyond structural and situational variables. Indeed, previous research showed that people evaluate less unfairness in the income distribution in LA when objective inequality was reduced between 1997 and 2015 (Reyes & Gasparini, 2021). Our chapter builds on this research and extends it as we broaden the period (from 1997-2020), use all the spectrum of fairness evaluations (from fair to unfair), look at the different patterns of change between countries, and analyze the role of ideological beliefs on justice evaluations.

In Huseyin Cakal, Vanessa Smith & David Sirlopu: Social Unrest in Latin America: Social Psychological Perspectives. -: Work in progress