Virtue, Personality, and Social Relations: Self-Control as the Moral Muscle
Baumeister, R. F., & Exline, J. J. (1999). Virtue, Personality, and Social Relations: Self-Control as the Moral Muscle. Journal of Personality, 67 (6): 1165-94.
Abstract: Morality is a set of rules that enable
people to live together in harmony, and virtue involves internalizing those
rules. Insofar as virtue depends on overcoming selfish or antisocial impulses
for the sake of what is best for the group or collective, self-control can be
said to be the master virtue. We analyze vice, sin, and virtue from the
perspective of self-control theory. Recent research findings indicate that
self-control involves expenditure of some limited resource and suggest the
analogy of a moral muscle as an appropriate way to conceptualize virtue in
personality. Guilt fosters virtuous self-control by elevating interpersonal
obligations over personal, selfish interests. Several features of modern
Western society make virtue and self-control especially difficult to achieve.
(Something interesting I found)Posted: Monday, January 12, 2009
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