Moral Development - Lawrence Kohlberg Essay

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Kohlberg's Moral Development

Lawrence Kohlberg grew up in Bronxville, New York and attended handover Academy in Massachusetts. This is an academically demanding private high school. He did not go straight to college but instead went to help the Israeli cause, serving as the second engineer on an old freighter carrying European refugees through British blockades to Israel. After this Kohlberg enrolled at the University of Chicago where he scored so high on admission test that he only had to take a limited number of courses to earn his bachelor's degree. This he did in one year. He stayed on at Chicago for graduate work in psychology, at first thinking he would become a clinical psychologist. In this study he soon became
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Kohlberg six stages of moral development from this study. Level 1 is Reconventional Morality. Stage 1 is Obedience and Punishment Orientation. The child powerful authorities hand down a fixed set of rules, which he or she must unquestioningly obey. Stage 2 is Individualism and Exchange. At this stage children recognize that there is not just one right view that is handed down by the authorities. Different individuals have different viewpoints. Level 2 is Conventional Morality. Stage 3 is Good Interpersonal Relationships. At this stage children who are by now usually entering their teens see morality as more than simple deals. They believe that people should live up to the expectations of the family and community and behave in good way. Good behavior means having good motives and interpersonal feeling such as love, empathy, trust, and concern for others. Stage 4 is maintaining the Social Order. This stage works best in two-person relationships with family members or close friends, where one can make a real effort to get to know the other's feelings and needs and try to help. At this stage, in contrast, the respondent becomes more broadly concerned with society as a whole. Level 3 is Postconventional Morality. Stage 5 is Social Contract and Individual Rights.

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