The psychology of moral development and moral reasoning
Psychologist Lawrence Kohlberg has developed an interesting theoretical structure allowing one to understand the logic of moral reasoning in terms of three levels: Pre-Conventional, Conventional, and Post-Conventional; and six different stages, two for each level. According to Kohlberg, pretty much the only individuals to score at the Post-Conventional level are those individuals who have graduated from college or have had some exposure to higher education. The Post-Conventional level of thinking reflects the phenomenom that the individual can morally appraise the laws, customs and institutions of one’s society against higher moral considerations such as human dignity and justice. For this unit’s discussion topic you will need to read “Letter from Birmingham Jail”, by Dr. Martin Luther King . Discuss how Dr. King’s justification for his civil disobedience might be classified as a Post- Conventional, stage #5 method of moral judgement. Identify and discuss those moral values which are appealed to by Dr. King in explaining why he had a moral obligation to disobey the civil laws of Birmingham, Alabama.
Make sure that you submit two posts: (1) “Main Post” – one post should address the discussion topic. (2) “Response Post” – one post should be a response to another person`s post. Each post needs to be 15-20 sentences in length. Also, make sure that you read all or almost all of the posts of your classmates. You are reminded that in your discussion posts you will be expected to show that you are integrating ideas from the assigned unit readings and the other resources provided (articles from newspapers, magazines, journals, and videos) into your posts. Failure to do this will result in a lower discussion grade and a successful discussion post that refers to specific readings and videos will receive a higher discussion grade. Your “Main Post” needs to be submitted by midnight on Thursday. Your “Response Post” needs to be submitted by midnight on Sunday.
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