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Restoring Trust in Organizations and LeadersEnduring Challenges and Emerging Answers$
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Roderick M. Kramer and Todd L. Pittinsky

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199756087

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199756087.001.0001

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Moral Bases of Public Distrust

Moral Bases of Public Distrust

Politics, Partisanship, and Compromise

Chapter:
(p.7) 1 Moral Bases of Public Distrust
Source:
Restoring Trust in Organizations and Leaders
Author(s):

Ronnie Janoff-Bulman

Michael T. Parker

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199756087.003.0002

This chapter uses morality as a lens for understanding distrust of government in the United States today. Drawing from recent work on the psychology of morality, it highlights the unique nature of moral convictions and the strong links between morality and trust. With this as a backdrop, distrust is discussed in relation to ingroup-outgroup status and perceptions of threat in moral conflict. These factors are then used to explore the increased partisanship that has defined U.S. national politics over the past few decades. Together morality and partisanship provide a basis for understanding distrust not only of those on the opposite side of the political divide, which we might expect, but, paradoxically, also distrust of those on our own side of the political divide as well.

Keywords:   morality, trust, distrust, politics, partisanship, ingroup, outgroup, threat

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