Lay causal perceptions of Third World poverty and the Just World Theory

David J. Harper1, Graham F. Wagstaff1, J. Tim Newton2, Kevin R. Harrison1
1University of Liverpool, United Kingdom
2Salford College of Technology, United Kingdom
Cite this article:  Harper, D. J., Wagstaff, G. F., Newton, J. T., & Harrison, K. R. (1990). Lay causal perceptions of Third World poverty and the Just World Theory. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 18, 235-238.

Volume 18 Issue 2 | e621 | Published: August 1990 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2224/sbp.1990.18.2.235

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This study investigated the factor analytic properties of Rubin and Peplau’s (1975) Just World Scale and a questionnaire of possible causes of Third World poverty. Three Just World factors emerged in contrast to Hyland and Dann’s (1987) four-factor solution. They were interpreted as “Pro Just World”, “Anti Just World” and “Cynical or Reserved Just World Belief”. Four poverty factors emerged, interpreted as “Blame the Poor”, “Blame Third World Governments”, “Blame Nature” and “Blame Exploitation”. The most important finding to emerge was that only the “Pro Just World” factor and significantly correlated with blaming the poor. Blaming the poor was significantly correlated with blaming Third World governments.
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