Procedural Justice and Affect Intensity: Understanding Reactions to Regulatory Authorities

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Title Procedural Justice and Affect Intensity: Understanding Reactions to Regulatory Authorities
Author Murphy, Kristina
Journal Name Social Justice Research
Year Published 2009
Place of publication United States
Publisher Springer New York LLC
Abstract Why is it that some people respond in a more negative way to procedural injustice than do others, and why is it that some people go on to defy authority while others in the same situation do not? Personality theorists suggest that the psychological effect of a situation depends on how a person interprets the situation and that such differences in interpretation can vary as a function of individual difference factors. For example, affect intensity—one's predisposition to react more or less emotionally to an event—is one such individual difference factor that has been shown to influence people's reactions to events. Cross-sectional survey data collected from (a) 652 tax offenders who have been through a serious law enforcement experience (Study 1), and (b) 672 citizens with recent personal contact with a police officer (Study 2), showed that individual differences in 'affect intensity' moderate the effect of procedural justice on both affective reactions and compliance behavior. Specifically, perceptions of procedural justice had a greater effect in reducing anger and reports of non-compliance among those lower in affect intensity than those higher in affect intensity. Both methodological and theoretical explanations are offered to explain the results, including the suggestion that emotions of shame may play a role in the observed interaction.
Peer Reviewed Yes
Published Yes
Alternative URI
Volume 22
Issue Number 1
Page from 1
Page to 30
ISSN 0885-7466
Date Accessioned 2011-03-30
Language en_AU
Research Centre Key Centre for Ethics, Law, Justice and Governance
Faculty Arts, Education and Law
Subject Criminology; Psychology
Publication Type Journal Articles (Refereed Article)
Publication Type Code c1x

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