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Morality in Kohlberg’s and Piaget’s Views Essay


Interview with Freud

What is the nature and definition of morality in a human being?

I think that morality is a repressive force that prevents a human being from displaying his/her instincts (Dilman, 2005, p. 93). It limits people’s drive to satisfy their most basic desires, for instance, one can mention sexual drive. On the whole, morality takes its origins in the tension between a person’s desires or needs and the values of a society (Dilman, 2005, p. 93).

How does morality manifest itself and develop in the course of human life?

As I have said before, morality is a repressive force. For instance, it restricts aggressive force that is very strong at the time when a person is angry or frustrated (Neu, 1991, p. 219). Apart from that, it restricts the libido of a person. Overall, morality is supposed to make sure that a person corresponds to the norms set by other people. Moral development does not follow a particular pattern, and it is difficult to distinguish the different stages of this process. Nevertheless, I would like to note that the evolution of morality is based on the interaction between the id, ego, and finally super-ego. In most cases, morality arises out of the conflict between id or instinctive desires and ego that is responsible for controlling these desires. Finally, one should mention the super-ego which is supposed to ensure a person acts according to one’s conscience or principles, even when there is no threat of punishment (Neu, 1991, p. 219).

What is the role and meaning of values at different stages of life?

At the early stages of a person’s life, values are perceived mostly as rules that restrict the behavior. An individual accepts their necessity but only because the violation of these norms can result in punishment. Later, these values are internalized. They are regarded by a person as moral obligations.

Interview with Lawrence Kohlberg

What is the origin and definition of morality?

In my view, morality is a result of people’s tendency toward empathy and the ability to place oneself in the position of others (Harding, 1985, p. 135). I think that moral development results from a person’s interaction with others and observation of behavior. By observing various role models such as parents, a child learns to evaluate the morality of an action.

How does morality manifest itself and develop in the course of human life?

Morality functions differently in everyday life and its manifestations are dependent on the age of an individual. In particular, a child may follow the rules set by parents or teachers to avoid punishment or gain rewards. For instance, one can mention a form of misconduct as insulting another person. In turn, when this person grows older, he/she understands that morality is necessary for the co-existence of human beings. An individual adheres to rules, even if there is no risk of punishment. I think that there are three levels of moral development namely: 1) pre-conventional stage when rewards and punishment play the most important role; 2) conventional level when an individual learns and understands social norms by observing others; 3) post-conventional level at which an individual identifies ethical principles that are obligatory in every case (Evans, 2009, p. 102).

What is the role of meaning and values in different stages of life?

At the early stages of life, ethical values such as integrity are regarded mostly as an obligation that is imposed from outside. Only, later an individual can embrace these values and perceive them as moral imperatives that are an inherent part of being human.

Interview with Piaget

What is the nature of morality?

I believe that morality is a set of rules that a person constructs through interaction with others and the assessment of people’s behavior (Spodek & Saracho, 2006). Morality can also be considered a developmental process, during which an individual internalizes values such as integrity, respect for others, or tolerance.

How does morality develop in the course of human life?

On the whole, the moral development of a person can be separated into several parts. At first, I would like to mention heteronymous morality; this concept means that a child does not always understand moral principles and tries to follow them to avoid punishment (Spodek & Saracho, 2006, p. 56). Later, a child develops the so-called autonomous morality. This means that an individual can independently evaluate the behavior of others. Moreover, when taking a decision, a person tries to put oneself in the position of others (Spodek & Saracho, 2006, p. 56). This is how individual morality evolves.

What is the role of meaning and values in different stages of life?

A person’s attitude to values resembles the development of morality that can be divided into heteronymous and autonomous stages. During the heteronymous stage, values like honesty or diligence are not meaningful to a child, because he/she does not understand the role that these values play. Later, an individual understands the meaning of these concepts and he/she understand their importance.

Summary

Thus, this comparison shows that famous psychologists do not have a safe view of morality. For instance, Freud regards it mostly as the restriction or control of primitive instincts. In contrast, Kohlberg and Piaget believe that they are social constructs that help a person take decisions and interact with others. Yet, these psychologists agree that with time passing a person internalizes moral values and perceives them as internal imperatives.

Reference List

Dilman, I. (2005). The Self, The Soul And The Psychology Of Good And Evil. New York: Routledge.

Evans, N. (2009). Student Development in College: Theory, Research, and Practice. New York: John Wiley & Sons.

Harding, C. (1985). Moral Dilemmas: Philosophical and Psychological Issues in the Development of Moral Reasoning. New York: Transaction Publishers.

Spodek, B., & Saracho. O. (2006). Handbook of Research on the Education of Young Children: Second Edition. New York: Routledge.

Neu, J. (1991). The Cambridge Companion to Freud. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

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IvyPanda. 2021. "Morality in Kohlberg's and Piaget's Views." February 12, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/morality-in-kohlbergs-and-piagets-views/.

References

IvyPanda. (2021) 'Morality in Kohlberg's and Piaget's Views'. 12 February.

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