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DIFFERENTIAL ENCODING OF THE TWO FUNDAMENTAL ETHICAL STANDARDS

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Abstract:

This study explored the encoding salience of the two fundamental ethical standards of extrinsic utility and intrinsic duty. The specific research question was: “To what extent are the two key notions of human good encoded in distinctive cognitive schemas?” The release-fromproactive- interference (RPI) experimental paradigm in memory research was used to address the question. Words in the conceptual categories of “money” and “morals” were selected to denote the utilitarian and deontological notions respectively. Results show a significant release in recall when words were shifted from one notion to the other. The theoretical and practical implications of the differential encoding of the two ethical standards are then discussed.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2224/sbp.2002.30.8.765

Publication date: January 1, 2002

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