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Latest Morality Stories

2011-12-02 18:29:38

Individuals and courts deal more harshly with people who actively commit harm than with people who willfully allow the same harm to occur. A new study finds that this moral distinction is psychologically automatic. It requires more thought to see each harmful behavior as morally equivalent. People typically say they are invoking an ethical principle when they judge acts that cause harm more harshly than willful inaction that allows that same harm to occur. That difference is even codified...

2011-12-01 22:17:10

Imagine a runaway boxcar heading toward five people who can´t escape its path. Now imagine you had the power to reroute the boxcar onto different tracks with only one person along that route. Would you do it? That´s the moral dilemma posed by a team of Michigan State University researchers in a first-of-its-kind study published in the research journal Emotion. Research participants were put in a three dimensional setting and given the power to kill one person (in this case, a...

2011-11-09 16:11:25

In the fight for survival, plants are capable of complex social behaviours and may exhibit altruism towards family members, but aggressively compete with strangers. A growing body of work suggests plants recognize and respond to the presence and identity of their neighbours. But can plants cooperate with their relatives? While some studies have shown that siblings perform best -- suggesting altruism towards relatives -- other studies have shown that when less related plants grow together...

2011-10-11 05:52:50

(Ivanhoe Newswire) -- A recent study shows implications for nurturing human egalitarianism and cooperating, based on the first evidence that a basic sense of fairness and altruism appears in infancy.  Babies as young as 15 months perceived the difference between equal and unequal distribution of food, and their awareness of equal rations was linked to their willingness to share a toy. "Our findings show that these norms of fairness and altruism are more rapidly acquired than we...

2011-10-03 15:00:15

Study questions the widely-used methods by which lay moral judgments are evaluated; results found individuals who are least prone to moral errors also possess a set of prototypically immoral psychological characteristics A study conducted by Daniel Bartels, Columbia Business School, Marketing, and David Pizarro, Cornell University, Psychology found that people who endorse actions consistent with an ethic of utilitarianism–the view that what is the morally right thing to do is...

2011-06-22 08:00:00

SAN DIEGO, June 22, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The Crime Victims Fund, the organization that provides direct assistance and services for victims of crime, announced today it is partnering with internationally acclaimed artist Mark Jesinoski to offer limited edition prints and original paintings from his popular Aquaticus Series. Jesinoski paints oil and acrylic originals. His Aquaticus Series of abstracts focuses on the flow of water as a metaphor for change. His work is also available as...

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2011-06-04 15:55:00

Research shows morally laden scenarios get different responses from people of different ages.Moral responses change as people age says a new study from the University of Chicago.Both preschool children and adults distinguish between damage done either intentionally or accidently when assessing whether a perpetrator has done something wrong, said study author Jean Decety. But, adults are much less likely than children to think someone should be punished for damaging an object, for example,...

2011-05-09 21:40:27

Medical involvement with torture is prohibited by international law and professional associations, and yet sometimes it is the right thing for doctors to do, argue two bioethicists. Their timely paper in the Hastings Center Report comes as news of the trail leading to the death of Osama Bin Laden points to prisoners at Guantanamo Bay who were subject to "enhanced interrogation techniques," which many believe amounted to torture. Despite its prohibition, torture remains widespread in more than...

2011-04-20 13:31:37

Temptation to cheat on a math test was best resisted by students who believe in a harsh, punishing God Belief in God doesn't deter a person from cheating on a test, unless that God is seen as a mean, punishing one, researchers say. On the flip side, psychology researchers Azim F. Shariff at the University of Oregon and Ara Norenzayan at the University of British Columbia found that undergraduate college students who believe in a caring, forgiving God are more likely to cheat. The findings...

2011-02-23 17:25:02

A study by Rimma Teper, Michael Inzlicht, and Elizabeth Page-Gould of the University of Toronto Scarborough (UTSC) on human morality has just been published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association of Psychological Science. The study tested the difference between moral forecasting and moral action"”and the reasons behind any mismatch. The findings look encouraging: people act more morally than they would have predicted. But lest we get sentimental about that result, lead...


Word of the Day
siliqua
  • A Roman unit of weight, 1⁄1728 of a pound.
  • A weight of four grains used in weighing gold and precious stones; a carat.
  • In anatomy, a formation suggesting a husk or pod.
  • The lowest unit in the Roman coinage, the twenty-fourth part of a solidus.
  • A coin of base silver of the Gothic and Lombard kings of Italy.
'Siliqua' comes from a Latin word meaning 'a pod.'
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