Moral Psychology (3 volumes)
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Sinnott-Armstrong, Walter. 2008. Moral Psychology.
Vol. 1: The Evolution of Morality;
Vol. 2: The Cognitive Science of Morality;
Vol. 3: The Neuroscience of Morality.

Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Three hefty volumes (in size and cost—and intellectual content). These books valuably survey scientific perspectives on moral feeling, judgment and reasoning — all at the psychological level — but primarily for those already familiar with the questions. As in the Katz volume, commentaries follow the 8 primary papers, allowing a good sense of the spectrum of views.

Volume 1

Volume 2 focuses on how the cognitive sciences contribute to interpreting morality and moral principles (apart from how they evolved). One topic is how the brain uses heuristics, or "shortcuts," in everyday reasoning, and whether this does (or should) affect moral thinking. Other topics include intuitions (are they universal and/or should we trust them?), how contextualization and language affects moral judgments, the interaction of emotions and reasoning, and the gap between what causes people to act and how we assign moral responsibility.

Volume 3

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© 2008. Douglas Allchin, evolutionofmorality.edu