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Sex differences in moral internalization and values.

Authors
Type
Published Article
Journal
Journal of personality and social psychology
Publication Date
Volume
32
Issue
4
Pages
720–729
Identifiers
PMID: 1185510
Source
Medline

Abstract

The subjects were fifth- and seventh-grade white middle-class children and their parents. The major moral internalization indices pertain to internal moral judgment, guilt intensity, and fear of punishment. The findings support the prevalent view that consideration for others is more salient in females. They also suggest, with considerable consistency (especially in adults) that moral transgressions are more likely to be associated with guilt in females and fear in males. No sex differences in internal moral judgment were obtained. Evidence was presented suggesting that the differences in children may be due partly to different discipline and affection patterns. It was also suggested that the results for adults as well as children might be explained by differential sex-role socialization as well as by increasing pressures on males over the life cycle to achieve and succeed, which may often conflict with concerns about the welfare of others.

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