Moral Psychology and the Unity of Morality

Utilitas 27 (2):119-146 (2015)

Jay Quigley
Florida State University
Jonathan Haidt's research on moral cognition has revealed that political liberals moralize mostly in terms of Harm and Fairness, whereas conservatives moralize in terms of those plus loyalty to Ingroup, respect for Authority, and Purity. Some have concluded that the norms of morality encompass a wide variety of subject matters with no deep unity. To the contrary, I argue that the conservative position is partially debunked by its own lights. IAP norms’ moral relevance depends on their tendency to promote welfare. I argue that all moral agents, including conservatives, are committed to that claim at least implicitly. I then argue that an evolutionary account of moral cognition partially debunks the view that welfare-irrelevant IAP norms have moral force. Haidt's own normative commitments are harmonized by this view: IAP norms are more important than liberals often realize, yet morality is at bottom all about promoting welfare
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DOI 10.1017/s0953820814000351
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References found in this work BETA

A Darwinian Dilemma for Realist Theories of Value.Sharon Street - 2006 - Philosophical Studies 127 (1):109-166.
Evolutionary Debunking Arguments.Guy Kahane - 2011 - Noûs 45 (1):103-125.
Mind Perception is the Essence of Morality.Kurt Gray, Liane Young & Adam Waytz - 2012 - Psychological Inquiry 23 (2):101-124.

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