Dual Processes and Moral Rules

Emotion Review 3 (3):284-285 (2011)
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Recent work proclaims a dominant role for automatic, intuitive, and emotional processes in producing ordinary moral judgment, despite the fact that we have little direct evidence about moral judgment “in the wild.” Indirect support comes via an assumption of dual-process theory: that conscious, reasoning processes are resource intensive. We argue that reasoning that employs consciously available moral rules undermines this assumption, but this has not been appreciated because of a failure to distinguish between explanation and justification. We conclude that it remains unclear what sorts of cognitive processes are dominant in ordinary moral judgments.



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Author Profiles

Ron Mallon
Washington University in St. Louis
Shaun Nichols
Cornell University