The Adult Stage Of Development Through Moral Reasoning Essay

892 Words Oct 5th, 2016 4 Pages
In the post-conventional stage, Kohlberg defines the adult stage of development through moral reasoning in a more personal/individual perspective. In stage five, the premise of “human rights” becomes the primary objective, which often involves an adult perception of justice through a more relativistic perspective. The idea of a ;’social contract’ becomes possible at this stage because the individual has learned to reason and evaluate the rules and regulations in society, which can be compared and critically evaluated on s historical, social, and legal system of reasoning. Kohlberg’s (1981) own rationalization for the social contract defines the complex interactions of the individual living within a society, which forms a foundation for the critical thinking skills needed for stage five: “I have tried to show that social contract, rule utilitarianism, and the conception of law as the protection of individual interests and liberties (157). In this aspect of adult life, the individual can now pick and chose any type of laws or social values that they believe to be in their best interest, yet these choices should be made by properly evaluating the validity of laws and social norms that bind the society together. This is a social contract is an essential part of moral reasoning for adults, which goes far beyond the cognitive limitations of Piaget’s theory of adult development:
[Stage five] characterizes the prior-to-society perspective or, to put it philosophically, the stage of…

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