Authors
Simon Fitzpatrick
John Carroll University
Abstract
Intent and mitigating circumstances play a central role in moral and legal assessments in large-scale industrialized societies. Al- though these features of moral assessment are widely assumed to be universal, to date, they have only been studied in a narrow range of societies. We show that there is substantial cross-cultural variation among eight traditional small-scale societies (ranging from hunter-gatherer to pastoralist to horticulturalist) and two Western societies (one urban, one rural) in the extent to which intent and mitigating circumstances influence moral judgments. Although participants in all societies took such factors into account to some degree, they did so to very different extents, varying in both the types of considerations taken into account and the types of violations to which such considerations were applied. The particular patterns of assessment characteristic of large-scale industrialized societies may thus reflect relatively recently culturally evolved norms rather than inherent features of human moral judgment.
Keywords morality  intentions  cognition  culture  human universals
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References found in this work BETA

The Weirdest People in the World?Joseph Henrich, Steven J. Heine & Ara Norenzayan - 2010 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 33 (2-3):61-83.
How Does Moral Judgment Work?Joshua Greene & Jonathan Haidt - 2002 - Trends in Cognitive Sciences 6 (12):517-523.
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Citations of this work BETA

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Moral Psychology: Empirical Approaches.John Doris & Stephen Stich - 2008 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Determinism and Divine Blame.John Ross Churchill - 2017 - Faith and Philosophy 34 (4):425-448.

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