Trust upset : Redefining the terms of trust in maintaining exchange relations

Journal article


Qi, Xiaoying. (2021). Trust upset : Redefining the terms of trust in maintaining exchange relations. The Sociological Review. pp. 1-17. https://doi.org/10.1177/00380261211049035
AuthorsQi, Xiaoying
Abstract

In contractual relations, malfeasance is subject to sanction by formal institutions. Trust is widely held to be an informal basis of non-contractual exchange, in which breaches of trust lead to exposure, resulting in the perpetrator’s loss of reputation and likely exclusion from future exchanges. The present article, on the other hand, shows that breaches of trust may lead to neither of these outcomes. Interview data reported here show that individuals who experience violations of agreement may develop coping strategies that do not include exposure of betrayal, confronting the trust-breaker, or retaliation. A contribution of the present article is to show that these differences can be conceptualized as involving two possible strategies by the betrayed party: one involving retaliation, directed to public disclosure of the betrayer’s unreliability and possible expulsion from future exchanges; the other is self-management, in which betrayal leads to the betrayed modifying their expectations and behaviour. A second contribution is to show how trust may be sociologically understood as a continuous process, requiring renegotiation, rearticulation, and even redefinition, rather than as a resolved and final commitment.

Keywordsexchange relations; face; guanxi; institutions; obligation; power; trust
Year2021
JournalThe Sociological Review
Journal citationpp. 1-17
PublisherSage Publications Ltd.
ISSN0038-0261
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1177/00380261211049035
Scopus EID2-s2.0-85116328610
Research or scholarlyResearch
Page range1-17
FunderAustralian Catholic University
Publisher's version
License
All rights reserved
File Access Level
Controlled
Output statusIn press
Publication dates
Online04 Oct 2021
Publication process dates
Deposited22 Dec 2021
Grant IDACU/91-903971-142
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