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The Economic OtherInequality in the American Political Imagination$
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Meghan Condon and Amber Wichowsky

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780226691732

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: May 2021

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226691909.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 23 September 2021

Inequality in the Social Mind

Inequality in the Social Mind

(p.13) Chapter 2 Inequality in the Social Mind
The Economic Other

Meghan Condon

Amber Wichowsky

University of Chicago Press

This chapter presents a puzzle: why hasn’t American support for social welfare spending increased with growing inequality? After showing how public opinion about inequality and social spending has changed over time, the authors draw together explanations of the trends from across the social sciences: economics, sociology, and political science. The chapter explains that attention to cross-class social comparison is an important but often ignored phenomena connecting inequality and political attitudes and presents a theoretical model of attitude formation centered on the social perception of inequality.

Keywords:   public opinion, economic inequality, redistribution, political attitudes, social welfare policy, economics, sociology, psychology, attitude formation, social comparison

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