Playing by the Rules.

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  • Author(s): Levin-Rozalis, Miri
  • Source:
    Theory & Psychology. Feb2007, Vol. 17 Issue 1, p5-31. 27p. 1 Diagram.
  • Additional Information
    • Subject Terms:
    • Abstract:
      The research reported here attempts to reveal the complex relationships between 'law' and social behavior. The assumption is that social representations are the socio-cognitive mechanism that creates social behavior; thus, revealing the social representation of 'law' can give us an explanation of social behavior as it is related to law. The social representation of law among members of the divided Israeli society is very complex. It simultaneously embodies obedience to and violation of the law, freedom and limitations, negative experiences, and criticism of the law, together with an understanding of its importance. The social representations of the law among our interviewees permits them to experience a feeling of autonomy, while keeping behavior within normative limits to uphold the law. Interviewees were also found to believe that the law is the strongest instrument available to ensure that society is protected and the status quo preserved. The law is seen as the defender of democracy, the weapon for coping with unstable security and the guardian against social and political chaos. By revealing the complex construct of the social representations of 'law', we reveal the mechanism that controls the social behavior related to 'law', including obedience or disobedience and the social logic for these behaviors. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
    • Abstract:
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