The Role of Religion in Social and Democratic System Justification
The Case of Italian Catholicism
Keywords:Religiosity, Scriptural Literalism, Intrinsic and Extrinsic Religious Orientation, Italian Catholicism, system and democratic system justification
The aim of the current study is to explore, within the Italian Catholic context, the impact of scriptural literalism and religious orientation on the ideologies that legitimate the social and the democratic system. A sample of Catholic participants completed an anonymous self-report questionnaire concerning: a) scriptural literalism; b) intrinsic and extrinsic religious orientation; c) social and democratic system justification. Results show that scriptural literalism affects both intrinsic and extrinsic religious orientation, with extrinsic, but not intrinsic orientation tending to increase both social and democratic system justification. These results extend previous findings on the relationship between religion and the legitimisation of the social system. Possible implications for increasing social fairness in the future, filling the gap between religious precepts and an unconditional acceptance of social order, are also discussed.
Allport, Gordon W. 1966 The Religious Context of Prejudice. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 5(3): 447–57. https://doi.org/10.2307/1384172
Allport, Gordon W., and J. Michael Ross 1967 Personal Religious Orientation and Prejudice. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 5: 432–43. https://doi.org/10.1037/h0021212
Barker, David C., and Christopher J. Carman 2000 The Spirit of Capitalism? Religious Doctrine, Values, and Economic Attitude Constructs. Political Behavior 22: 1–27. https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1006614916714
Bartkowski, John 1996 Beyond Biblical Literalism and Inerrancy: Conservative Protestants and the Hermeneutic Interpretation of Scripture. Sociology of Religion 57(3): 259–72. https://doi.org/10.2307/3712156
Batara, Jame Bryan L., Pamela S. Franco, Mequia Angelo M. Quiachon and Dianelle Rose M. Sembrero 2016 Effects of Religious Priming Concepts on Prosocial Behavior towards Ingroup and Outgroup. Europe’s Journal of Psychology 12(4): 635–44. https://doi.org/10.5964/ejop.v12i4.1170
Batson, C. Daniel, and Eric L. Stocks 2005 Religion and Prejudice. In On the Nature of Prejudice: Fifty Years after Allport, edited by John F. Dovidio, Peter Glick and Laurie A. Rudman, 413–27. Blackwell, Oxford.
Burdette, Amy. M., Christopher G. Ellison and Terrence D. Hill 2005 Conservative Protestantism and Tolerance toward Homosexuals: An Examination of Potential Mechanisms. Sociological Inquiry 75(2): 177–96. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1475-682X.2005.00118.x
Burn, Shawn M., and Julia Busso 2005 Ambivalent Sexism, Scriptural Literalism, and Religiosity. Psychology of Women Quarterly 29(4): 412–18. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1471-6402.2005.00241.x
Cohen, Adam B., and Peter C. Hill 2007 Religion as Culture: Religious Individualism and Collectivism among American Catholics, Jews, and Protestants. Journal of Personality 75(4): 709–42. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-6494.2007.00454.x
Cohen, Adam B., John D. Pierce Jr, Jacqueline Chambers, Rachel Meade, Benjamin J. Gorvine and Harold G. Koenig 2005a Intrinsic and Extrinsic Religiosity, Belief in the Afterlife, Death Anxiety, and Life Satisfaction in Young Catholics and Protestants. Journal of Research in Personality 39(3): 307–24. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jrp.2004.02.005
Cohen, Adam B., Daniel E. Hall, Harold G. Koenig and Keith G. Meador 2005b Social versus Individual Motivation: Implications for Normative Definitions of Religious Orientation. Personality and Social Psychology Review 9(1): 48–61. https://doi.org/10.1207/s15327957pspr0901_4
Ellison, Christopher G., and Marc A. Musick 1993 Southern Intolerance: A Fundamentalist Effect? Social Forces 72(2): 379–98. https://doi.org/10.1093/sf/72.2.379
Faul, Franz, Edgar Erdfelder, Axel Buchner and Albert-Georg Lang 2009 Statistical Power Analyses Using G* Power 3.1: Tests for Correlation and Regression Analyses. Behavior Research Methods 41(4): 1149–60. https://doi.org/10.3758/BRM.41.4.1149
Garelli, Franco 2007 The Public Relevance of the Church and Catholicism in Italy. Journal of Modern Italian Studies 12(1): 8–36. https://doi.org/10.1080/13545710601132722
Flexible Catholicism, Religion and the Church: The Italian Case. Religions 4(1): 1–13. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel4010001
Gaunt, Ruth 2012 ‘Blessed is he who has not made me a woman’: Ambivalent Sexism and Jewish Religiosity. Sex Roles 67(9-10): 477–87. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11199-012-0185-8
Glick, Peter, Maria Lameiras and Yolanda Rodriguez Castro 2002 Education and Catholic Religiosity as Predictors of Hostile and Benevolent Sexism toward Women and Men. Sex Roles 47(9-10): 433–41. https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1021696209949
Goplen, Joanna, and E. Ashby Plant 2015 A Religious Worldview: Protecting One’s Meaning System through Religious Prejudice. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin 41(11): 1474–87. https://doi.org/10.1177/0146167215599761
Gorsuch, Richard L., and Susan E. McPherson 1989 Intrinsic/Extrinsic Measurement: I/E-revised and Single-item Scales. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 28(3): 348–54. https://doi.org/10.2307/1386745
Greeley, Andrew M. 1989 Religious Change in America. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA.
Hall, Deborah L., David C. Matz and Wendy Wood 2010 Why Don’t We Practice What We Preach? A Meta-Analytic Review of Religious Racism. Personality and Social Psychology Review 14(1): 126–39. https://doi.org/10.1177/1088868309352179
Hoffmann, John P., and John P. Bartkowski 2008 Gender, Religious Tradition, and Biblical Literalism. Social Forces 86(3): 1245–72. https://doi.org/10.1353/sof.0.0013
Hoffmann, John P., and Sherrie Mills Johnson 2005 Attitudes toward Abortion among Religious Traditions in the United States: Change or Continuity? Sociology of Religion 66(2): 161–82. https://doi.org/10.2307/4153084
Hogge, James H., and Thomas T. Friedman 1967 The Scriptural Literalism Scale: A Preliminary Report. Journal of Psychology 66(2): 275–79. https://doi.org/10.1080/00223980.1967.10544905
Hu, Li- tze, and Peter M. Bentler 1999 Cutoff Criteria for Fit Indexes in Covariance Structure Analysis: Conventional Criteria versus New Alternatives. Structural Equation Modeling: A Multidisciplinary Journal 6(1): 1–55. https://doi.org/10.1080/10705519909540118
Hunsberger, Bruce, Vida Owusu and Robert Duck 1999 Religion and Prejudice in Ghana and Canada: Religious Fundamentalism, Right-wing. International Journal for the Psychology of Religion 9(3): 181–94. https://doi.org/10.1207/s15327582ijpr0903_2
Hunter, James 1987 Evangelicalism: The Coming Generation. University of Chicago Press, Chicago and London.
Jost, John T. 2019 A Quarter Century of System Justification Theory: Questions, Answers, Criticisms, and Societal Applications. British Journal of Social Psychology 58(2): 263–314. https://doi.org/10.1111/bjso.12297
Jost, John T., and Mahzarin R. Banaji 1994 The Role of Stereotyping in System Justification and the Production of False Consciousness. British Journal of Social Psychology 33(1): 1–27. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.2044-8309.1994.tb01008.x
Jost, John T., and Diana Burgess 2000 Attitudinal Ambivalence and the Conflict between Group and System Justification Motives in Low Status Groups. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin 26(3): 293–305. https://doi.org/10.1177/0146167200265003
Jost, John T., and Orsolya Hunyady 2005 Antecedents and Consequences of System-justifying Ideologies. Current Directions in Psychological Science 14(5): 260–65. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.0963-7214.2005.00377.x
Jost, John T., and Aaron C. Kay 2005 Exposure to Benevolent Sexism and Complementary Gender Stereotypes: Consequences for Specific and Diffuse Forms of System Justification. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 88(3): 498–509. https://doi.org/10.1037/0022-35126.96.36.1998
Jost, John T., and Jim Sidanius (eds) 2004 Political Psychology: Key Readings. Psychology Press, New York.
Jost, John T., and Erik P. Thompson 2000 Group-based Dominance and Opposition to Equality as Independent Predictors of Self-esteem, Ethnocentrism, and Social Policy Attitudes among African Americans and European Americans. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology 36(3): 209–32. https://doi.org/10.1006/jesp.1999.1403
Jost, John T., and Jojanneke van der Toorn 2012 System Justification Theory. In Handbook of Theories of Social Psychology, edited by Paul A. M. van Lange, Arie W. Kruglanski and E. Tory Higgins, 313–43. Sage, London.
Jost, John T., Mahzarin R. Banaji and Brian A. Nosek 2004 A Decade of System Justification Theory: Accumulated Evidence of Conscious and Unconscious Bolstering of the Status Quo. Political Psychology 25(6): 881–919. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-9221.2004.00402.x
Jost, John T., Jack Glaser, Arie W. Kruglanski and Frank J. Sulloway 2003 Political Conservatism as Motivated Social Cognition. Psychological Bulletin 129(3): 339–75. https://doi.org/10.1037/0033-2909.129.3.339
Jost, John T., Carlee Beth Hawkins, Brian A. Nosek, Erin P. Hennes, Chadly Stern, Samuel D. Gosling and Jesse Graham 2014 Belief in a Just God (and a Just Society): A System Justification Perspective on Religious Ideology. Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology 34(1): 56–81. https://doi.org/10.1037/a0033220
Jost, John T., Brian A. Nosek and Samuel D. Gosling 2008 Ideology: Its Resurgence in Social, Personality, and Political Psychology. Perspectives on Psychological Science 3(2): 126–36. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1745-6916.2008.00070.x
Jost, John T., Alison Ledgerwood and Curtis D. Hardin 2008 Shared Reality, System Justification, and the Relational Basis of Ideological Beliefs. Social and Personality Psychology Compass 2(1): 171–86. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1751-9004.2007.00056.x
Jost, John T., Ido Liviatan, Jojanneke van der Toorn, Alison Ledgerwood, Anesu Mandisodza and Brian A. Nosek 2011 System Justification: How Do We Know It’s Motivated? In Ontario Symposium on Personality and Social Psychology: Vol. 11. The Psychology of Justice and Legitimacy, edited by D. Ramona Bobocel, Aaron C. Kay, Mark P. Zanna and James M. Olson, 173–203. Psychology Press, Hillsdale, NJ.
Jost, John T., Tessa V. West, and Samuel D. Gosling 2009 Personality and Ideology as Determinants of Candidate Preferences and ‘‘Obama Conversion’’ in the 2008 US Presidential Election. The Dubois Review: Social Science on Race 6(1): 103–124. https://doi.org/10.1017/S1742058X09090109
Kay, Aaron C., and John T. Jost 2003 Complementary Justice: Effects of ‘Poor but Happy’ and ‘Poor but Honest’ Stereotype Exemplars on System Justification and Implicit Activation of the Justice Motive. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 85(5): 823–37. https://doi.org/10.1037/0022-35188.8.131.523
Kelloway, E. Kevin 1998 Using LlSREL for Structural Equation Modeling: A Researcher’s Guide. Sage, Thousand Oaks, CA.
Kline, Rex B. 1998 Principles and Practice of Structural Equation Modeling. The Guilford Press, New York.
Litman, Leib, Jonathan Robinson, Sarah L. Weinberger-Litman and Ron Finkelstein 2019 Both Intrinsic and Extrinsic Religious Orientation are Positively Associated with Attitudes toward Cleanliness: Exploring Multiple Routes from Godliness to Cleanliness. Journal of Religion and Health 58(1): 41–52. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10943-017-0460-7
Marsden, George M. 1980 Fundamentalism and American Culture: The Shaping of Twentieth-Century Evangelicalism, 1870–1925. Oxford University Press, Oxford.
McFarland, Sam. G. 1989 Religious Orientation and the Targets of Discrimination. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 28(3): 324–36. https://doi.org/10.2307/1386743
Roccas, Sonia 2005 Religion and Value Systems. Journal of Social Issues 61(4): 747–59. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1540-4560.2005.00430.x
Rutto, Filippo, Silvia Russo and Cristina O. Mosso 2014 Development and Validation of a Democratic System Justification Scale. Social Indicators Research 118(2): 1–11. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11205-013-0444-2
Saroglou, Vassilis, Vanessa Delpierre and Rebecca Dernelle 2004 Values and Religiosity: A Meta-analysis of Studies Using Schwartz’s Model. Personality and Individual Differences 37(4): 721–34. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.paid.2003.10.005
Sherkat, Darren E., and Christopher G. Ellison 1997 The Cognitive Structure of a Moral Crusade: Conservative Protestantism and Opposition to Pornography. Social Forces 75(3): 957–80. https://doi.org/10.1093/sf/75.3.957
Snibbe, Alana C., and Hazel R. Markus 2002 The Psychology of Religion and the Religion of Psychology. Psychological Inquiry 13(3): 229–34.
Van Camp, Debbie, Jamie Barden and Lloyd Sloan 2016 Social and Individual Religious Orientations Exist within Both Intrinsic and Extrinsic Religiosity. Archive for the Psychology of Religion 38(1): 22–46. https://doi.org/10.1163/15736121-12341316
You, Sukkyung, and Sun Ah Lim 2018 Religious Orientation and Subjective Well-being: The Mediating Role of Meaning in Life. Journal of Psychology and Theology 47(1): 34–47. https://doi.org/10.1177/0091647118795180
How to Cite
Equinox Publishing Ltd.