Deontological Moral Judgement
Of crucial significance, the presence of imagery has been shown to be associated with individuals making deontological moral judgements (Amit & Greene, 2012). Amit and Greene (2012) hypothesized that deontological moral judgements are supported by visual imagery and that verbal processes support utilitarian judgements. This was based on the finding that visual representations are more emotionally salient (Holmes & Mathews, 2005), than verbal thought (Mathews, Ridgeway & Holmes, 2013), due to the earlier evolution of emotion (O ̈ hman & Mineka, 2001).
Using a visual/verbal task to assess the preferential cognitive style of their participants (N=51), they found that individuals with visual cognitive styles made more deontological than utilitarian moral judgements. This occured when they were asked to comment on what they would do in seven moral dilemmas, presented in the form of vignettes. Using another experiment, Amit and Greene (2012) explained that this was because participants (N=370) visualized the action rather than the overall outcome. The visualization also triggered the emotional responses that support deontological