Francesco Margoni, Luca Surian

Continuity or Discontinuity in the Ontogeny of Moral Concepts?

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: Cognitive Development, Conceptual Continuity, Ethics, Infancy, Moral Judgment, Moral Philosophy

Does the history of human morality include major conceptual discontinuities? This is a question that captured the attention of several moral philosophers. Here, we ask a parallel question with respect to the ontogeny of human morality: Do major conceptual discontinuities occur during the ontogeny of moral judgment? The conceptual change view posits that younger children possess concepts of moral goodness or badness that are radically different from those possessed by older children and adults. We review the available empirical evidence and argue that it is more consistent with a conceptual continuity view than with the conceptual change view. We discuss the possibility that basic moral concepts emerge early in life and are not radically revised during development

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