Empathy and Moral Development: Implications for Caring and Justice

Format: Paperback
Pub. Date: 2001-11-12
Publisher(s): Cambridge University Press
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Contemporary theories have generally focused on either the behavioral, cognitive or emotional dimensions of prosocial moral development. This volume provides the first comprehensive account of prosocial moral development in children. The book's focus is empathy's contribution to altruism and compassion for others in physical, psychological, or economic distress; feelings of guilt over harming someone; feelings of anger at others who do harm; feelings of injustice when others do not receive their due. Also highlighted are the psychological processes involved in empathy's interaction with certain parental behaviors that foster moral internalization in children and the psychological processes involved in empathy's relation to abstract moral principles.

Author Biography

Martin L. Hoffman is Professor of Psychology at New York University

Table of Contents

1. Introduction and overview
2. Empathy, its arousal and prosocial functioning
3. Development of empathic distress
4. Empathic anger, sympathy, guilt, feeling of injustice
5. Guilt and moral internalization
6. From discipline to internalization
7. Relationship and other virtual guilts
8. Empathy's limitations: is empathy enough? 9. Empathy and moral principles
10. Development of empathy-based justice principles
11. Multiple- claimant and caring-versus-justice dilemmas
12. The universality and culture issue
13. Implications for intervention.

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