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Outro: Why Moral Psychology?

Why study moral psychology? At the start of the course I suggested three reasons and asked you for yours. Let’s see how they have held up: the things we learnt, and the questions we are left with.

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Why an outro, not a conclusion? Because reaching a conclusion is your job (in the longer essay), not mine.

But if there were a conclusion to the lectures, it would have to answer the question we started with: Why study moral psychology? Not because it gives us deep insight into ethical principles, nor because we can know much about the processes underpinning our ethical abilities. But because it makes us aware of how little we know, how deep cultural differences in ethics can run, and because it suggests ways to work around these.


Norden, B. W. V. (2002). The Emotion of shame and the virtue of righteousness in Mencius. Dao, 2(1), 45–77.