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Carol Gilligan on Morality - Dictionary of Arguments

Slater I 167
Morality/GilliganVsKohlberg/sex differences//Gilligan: Gilligan (1982)(1) argued that because Kohlberg’s data (Kohlberg 1963/2008)(2); >Morality/Kohlberg) were obtained from male participants only, his model does not appropriately characterize the moral reasoning capacities of females.
VsVs/VsGilligan: However, subsequent studies with female participants have shown that male and female participants reason about Kohlberg’s dilemmas in highly similar ways.
The only consistent gender differences that have been found in this domain concern adults’ reasoning about real life dilemmas in the context of social relationships (e.g., whether to tell a friend that her spouse is having an affair or to send one’s father to a nursing home against his will; Walker, 2006)(3).


1. Gilligan, C. (1982). In a different voice. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
2. Kohlberg, L. (1963/2008). The development of children’s orientations toward a moral order. I: Sequence in the development of moral thought. Human Development, 51, 8—20.
3. Walker, L.J. (2006). Gender and morality. In M. Killen & J. G. Smetana (Eds), Handbook of moral development (pp. 93—115). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.


Gail D. Heyman and Kang Lee, “Moral Development. Revisiting Kohlberg’s Stages“, in: Alan M. Slater and Paul C. Quinn (eds.) 2012. Developmental Psychology. Revisiting the Classic Studies. London: Sage Publications


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Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution.
The note [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.
Gilligan, Carol
Slater I
Alan M. Slater
Paul C. Quinn
Developmental Psychology. Revisiting the Classic Studies London 2012


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