The Pervasive Impact of Moral Judgment


A series of recent studies have shown that people’s moral judgments can affect their intuitions as to whether or not a behavior was performed intentionally. Prior attempts to explain this effect can be divided into two broad families. Some researchers suggest that the effect is due to some peculiar feature of the concept of intentional action in particular, while others suggest that the effect is a reflection of a more general tendency whereby moral judgments exert a pervasive influence on folk psychology. The present paper argues in favor of the latter hypothesis by showing that the very same effect that has been observed for intentionally also arises for deciding, in favor of, opposed to, and advocating.

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