miércoles, 15 de julio de 2015

Why Good People are Divided by Politics and Religion,”

“The Righteous Mind” – Understanding Conservatives and Liberals

 by R.B.A. Di Muccio 

Social psychologist Jonathan Haidt has cracked the code on why it’s so hard for liberals and conservatives to find common ground. That’s a big deal. But an even more important benefit of his book, “The Righteous Mind: Why Good People are Divided by Politics and Religion,” is its value in helping conservatives understand liberals, and vice versa.

Haidt’s book and the body of work it encompasses are all that’s good and noble about true social science. In seeking to understand the roots of moral reasoning, it integrates a huge swathe of disciplines, is meticulously empirical, and leads the researcher to unavoidable but surprising conclusions. Haidt explains the gist of his research in a fascinating talk and in many online lectures. For our purposes here, the argument rests on two fundamental findings.

The first element of Haidt’s “moral foundations theory” is that the vast majority of moral reasoning rests on six foundations:
  1. Care/Harm
  2. Fairness/Cheating
  3. Liberty/Oppression
  4. Loyalty/Betrayal
  5. Authority/Subversion
  6. Sanctity/Degradation
The resulting “moral foundations” continuum aligns left to right (liberal to conservative) in political ideologies. 

To illustrate, think of Care/Harm as cherishing and protecting the oppressed and think of Fairness/Cheating as rendering justice according to shared rules or values. 

These are the most “liberal” of Haidt’s moral pillars. 

The right-most two pillars—Authority/Subversion and Sanctity/Degradation—emphasize obeying tradition and legitimate authority and holding transcendent categories of behavior or belief as sacrosanct (or abhorrent).

These foundations help us categorize people based on their most essential moral beliefs. Those who tend to see morality mostly through the prisms of Care/Harm and Fairness/Cheating are “liberal.” If your moral compass tends more toward Authority/Subversion and Sanctity/Degradation, you are “conservative.” Simple enough.

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