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Susen, S. (2018). Justification. In: Ritzer, G. & Rojek, C. (Eds.), The Blackwell Encyclopedia of Sociology. . Chichester: John Wiley & Sons.


In the most general sense, the term“justification” refers to the act of providing reasons for the validity, legitimacy, and defensibility of (1) an action, (2) a belief, and/or (3) a social arrangement. Thus, justificatory practices –which may be described as reason-giving acts oriented toward demonstrating that something is right, cogent,and persuasive–emerge in relation to (1) empirical and behavioral, (2) conceptual and ideological, and/or (3) conventional and institutional processes and structures.

Publication Type: Book Section
Additional Information: This the accepted version of a chapter published in 'The Blackwell Encyclopedia of Sociology' on 13 December 2018, which is available online at
Publisher Keywords: action, belief, Boltanski, Luc, justification, knowledge, legitimacy, normative orders, processes, reason, social arrangements, structures, Thévenot, Laurent, validity
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Departments: School of Policy & Global Affairs > Sociology & Criminology
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