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dc.contributor.advisorHalberstadt, Jamin
dc.contributor.authorPhilip, Tristan Joel
dc.date.available2014-04-30T03:11:54Z
dc.date.copyright2014
dc.identifier.citationPhilip, T. J. (2014). Motive, Character and the Moral Good: Elaboration on a Footnote (Thesis, Doctor of Philosophy). University of Otago. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/10523/4793en
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10523/4793
dc.description.abstractResearch on moral judgement has mostly examined judgements of moral wrongdoing. Little has been said about how people decide if an action is morally good. Furthermore there is evidence that judgements of good and bad actions differ sufficiently to make generalizing from the literature on moral wrongdoing to the moral good, problematic. This thesis examines the concept of a morally good action, focussing on how an agent’s motive and control over their actions influence an observer’s goodness judgements. Study 1 takes a qualitative look at the concept of moral goodness and identifies a number of factors central to the folk concept of a morally good action, including the importance of an agent’s motive. Study 2 provides experimental evidence that the motives identified in Study 1 (the interest of others, principles and self-interest) influence goodness judgements of actions, and that this relationship is partially mediated by an observer’s perception of an agent’s character. Studies 3-5 examine how good actions resulting from sympathy influence an observer’s goodness judgments. Finally Studies 6-8 examine how an agent’s control over their actions influences an observer’s goodness judgements, and find that loss of control from an internal source reduces how morally good an action is judged to be. This thesis is an exploratory look at the concept of a morally good action, and through a series of studies advances understanding of the relation between motive, character, control, and goodness judgements of actions.
dc.format.mimetypeapplication/pdf
dc.language.isoen
dc.publisherUniversity of Otago
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dc.subjectmorality
dc.subjectmoral judgment
dc.subjectcharacter
dc.subjectmoral good
dc.subjectmotive
dc.titleMotive, Character and the Moral Good: Elaboration on a Footnote
dc.typeThesis
dc.date.updated2014-04-30T00:30:41Z
dc.language.rfc3066en
thesis.degree.disciplinePsychology
thesis.degree.nameDoctor of Philosophy
thesis.degree.grantorUniversity of Otago
thesis.degree.levelDoctoral
otago.openaccessOpen
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