DISTINGUISHING ATTRIBUTIONS OF CAUSALITY, MORAL RESPONSIBILITY, AND BLAME: PERCEIVERS' EVALUATIONS OF THE ATTRIBUTIONS

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Abstract:

The present study investigated perceivers' evaluations of attributions of causality, moral responsibility, and blame. Subjects read two scenarios with either mild or severe consequences, and then rated the perpetrators on either causality, moral responsibility, or blame. Subjects subsequently rated the attributions on several evaluative dimensions. Attributions of moral responsibility were generally judged by perceivers to be more complex than attributions of causality and blame, suggesting that the process of attributing of blame may not involve the subprocess of evaluating moral responsibility. Excuses were not consistently judged to be more important for any particular type of attribution.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2224/sbp.1989.17.2.231

Publication date: January 1, 1989

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