Social Justice Research

, Volume 29, Issue 3, pp 331–344

Two Types of Justice Reasoning About Good Fortune and Misfortune: A Replication and Beyond


DOI: 10.1007/s11211-016-0269-7

Cite this article as:
Murayama, A. & Miura, A. Soc Just Res (2016) 29: 331. doi:10.1007/s11211-016-0269-7


While research into justice reasoning has progressed extensively, the findings and implications have been mainly limited to Western cultures. This study investigated the relationship between immanent and ultimate justice reasoning about others’ misfortune and good fortune in Japanese participants. The effects of goal focus and religiosity, which previously have been found to foster justice reasoning, were also tested. Participants were randomly assigned to one condition of a 2 (goal focus: long term or short term) × 2 (target person’s moral value: respected or thief) × 2 (type of luck: misfortune or good fortune) design. For immanent justice reasoning, the results revealed that a “bad” person’s misfortune was attributed to their past misdeeds, while a “good” person’s good fortune was attributed to their past good deeds. Regarding ultimate justice reasoning, it was found that a good person’s misfortune was connected more to future compensation than their good fortune, whereas a bad person’s misfortune was not reasoned about using ultimate justice. There was no significant effect of religiosity or goal focus on justice reasoning, which is inconsistent with the findings of previous studies. The necessity of directly examining cultural differences is discussed in relation to extending and strengthening the theory of justice reasoning.


Justice reasoning Types of fortune Immanent justice Ultimate justice Religiosity 

Funding information

Funder NameGrant NumberFunding Note
  • 25780381

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of International StudiesKindai UniversityHigashi-osakaJapan
  2. 2.Department of Psychological ScienceKwansei Gakuin UniversityNishinomiyaJapan

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