Moral Reasoning by the Great Philosophers Essay

Moral Reasoning by the Great Philosophers Essay

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"Moral thought, then, seems to behave like all other kinds of thought. Progress through the moral levels and stages is characterized by increasing differentiation and increasing integration, and hence is the same kind of progress that scientific theory represents." Quoted by Mr. Kohlberg himself. Kohlberg developed a set of stages on what he thought how man develops morally. Lawrence Kohlberg's reasoning for the stages of moral development stemmed from Swiss psychologist Jean Piaget; who was one of the first to study systematically moral reasoning in children. Lawrence was also influenced by Socrates, Immanuel Kant, & John Rawls. These were philosophers who preceded Kohlberg and what led him to make "Kohlberg's Stages of Moral Development." According to Kohlberg, although the specific content of moral codes can vary from culture to culture, what really distinguishes among cultures is what is only on the surface. He believed that humans, with the exceptions of sociopathic and severely impaired people, have an innate potential for development from the earlier to later stages of moral development. According to Lawrence, "each stage is distinct and reflects a level of moral judgment that is more complex than that of preceding stages." He compares his views of moral development as kind of like a "mathematical" solution to conflicts. Kohlberg's Stages of Moral development consists of three levels and within them six developmental stages; each more sufficient at responding to moral predicaments than its predecessor. Within his works he was predominantly concerned with justice. Level one: Pre-Conventional(early), which deals with the beginning two stages; the first being Punishment and Obedience( How can I elude punishment?) & the second ...

... middle of paper ...

...t-conventional stage.
Although, Gilligan's "care" perspective & Kohlberg's "justice" perspective relatively correlates one another, there are several differences among the two. I would not necessarily say that Gilligan's "care" perspective is weaker for what she mainly accomplished was creating equality between sexes. The problem with that was that gender references in moral reasoning was considered insignificant. Men can be just as emotional as women just as women can be just a justice oriented as men. Morality has no gender. With the care perspective, I would add a few key points such as age differences between men and women since how age is a key role in how we think morally. Also, Just how the justice perspective had a more well-rounded appeal to it, Gilligan should have focused on more of broader issues of equality and not focusing on people and relationships.

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