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Media Ethics: Lecture #2 – Piaget and Justice. Antigone Remember Antigone? What did she do? Why?

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Presentation on theme: "Media Ethics: Lecture #2 – Piaget and Justice. Antigone Remember Antigone? What did she do? Why?"— Presentation transcript:

1 Media Ethics: Lecture #2 – Piaget and Justice

2 Antigone Remember Antigone? What did she do? Why?

3 Antigone Antigone said to her uncle, King Creon, about his order not to bury her brother, Polynices, For me it was not Zeus who made that order. Nor did that Justice who lives with the gods below mark out such laws to hold among mankind.

4 Justice What was justice according to Antigone? What was justice according to Martin Luther King?

5 Piaget on Moral Reasoning and Justice Children get their sense of right and wrong from their parents in the form of rules, which the child considers inviolable and that must be kept literally. These attitudes are the result of constraints exercised by older children and adults and are associated with duties. Thus, moral realism is that any act that does not conform to the rules is bad.

6 Three Features of Moral Realism in a Child 1. A childs duty is to follow a command regardless of whether the command is good or bad. A rule is external to the mind. Good, therefore, is defined as obedient. 2.Moral realism at this age demands that the letter rather than the spirit of the law be observed. 3.Moral realism induces an objective conception responsibility. The child evaluates acts not in accordance to the motives that prompted them, but in terms of the exact conformity with established rules.

7 A Dilemma Up to the age of 10, a child judges actions in two ways: (1) According to results, (2) according to intention. – Sometimes judges one way, sometimes the other. Story of the cups: – 15 broken by accident (door opened suddenly) – Only one cup broken by accident (reaching for jam not supposed to have when mother was away).

8 Which Is Worse? Up to age six, size of result matters15 cups worse. – Why? Many adults tend to punish based on amount of damage. After age seven, intentions matter. – 15 cups – Didnt do it on purpose. – 1 cup – Wasnt supposed to have the jam.

9 Stealing Same with stealing: – Younger children look at the amount of material consequence (as a result of constraints of adults). – Older children take intentions into account.

10 Adults When adults allow themselves to evaluate acts based on clumsiness or pilfering in terms of their material result, this is universally seen as unjust (especially by children). On the other hand, parents who give their children a moral education based on intention achieve early results in teaching children to take personal responsibility. This is seen as just.

11 Judging Others However, as children and even as adults, our first reaction in judging: – Ourselves – To judge according to intentions. – Others – To judge them according to material consequences. – Attribution theory? How do these two perspectives relate to the concept of The end justifies the means? (Utilitarianism)

12 Lying Generally, the same principle holds with lying: Material consequence versus intention. – With younger children, the bigger the lie, the worse (The dog was bigger than a cow). – With older children, the lie with a bad intention is bigger (the motivation to deceive: I didnt draw on the wall).

13 Parents By attaching more importance to intentions than to rules, parents can teach their children to be considerate of those around them. When a child learns to please rather than to obey (a conscious decision) and take intentions into consideration, it presupposes cooperation and mutual respect.

14 Punishment Punishing children, therefore, is based on parents values: – Material – Intention And will be judged fair or unfair, eventually, by the child and by society.

15 Parents Mistakes Parents make a mistake when they make an effort to catch their children in wrong-doing instead of anticipating catastrophes and preventing the child by some artifice to divert them. Parents make a mistake with a multiplicity of orders (the more orders, greater the chance they will be contradictory – like government laws). Parents make a mistake when they take pleasure in inflicting punishments.

16 The pleasure taken in using authority a type of sadism, the child must be broken. Such a form of education leads to perpetual tension and to parents attribution to the inborn wickedness and original sin of the child. These mistakes, these constraints, mold a childs sense of morality and justice.

17 Examples?

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