Semantic Apparatus – Neural underpinnings of morality judgment and moral aesthetic judgment

Cited by Lee Sonogan

Moral decision-making and moral development: Toward an integrative  framework - ScienceDirect

Abstract by Qiuping Cheng,Xue Wen,Guozhen Ye,Yanchi Liu,Yilong Kong &Lei Mo 

Morality judgment usually refers to the evaluation of moral behavior`s ability to affect others` interests and welfare, while moral aesthetic judgment often implies the appraisal of moral behavior’s capability to provide aesthetic pleasure. Both are based on the behavioral understanding. To our knowledge, no study has directly compared the brain activity of these two types of judgments. The present study recorded and analyzed brain activity involved in the morality and moral aesthetic judgments to reveal whether these two types of judgments differ in their neural underpinnings. Results reveled that morality judgment activated the frontal, parietal and occipital cortex previously reported for motor representations of behavior. Evaluation of goodness and badness showed similar patterns of activation in these brain regions. In contrast, moral aesthetic judgment elicited specific activations in the frontal, parietal and temporal cortex proved to be involved in the behavioral intentions and emotions. Evaluation of beauty and ugliness showed similar patterns of activation in these brain regions. Our findings indicate that morality judgment and moral aesthetic judgment recruit different cortical networks that might decode others’ behaviors at different levels. These results contribute to further understanding of the essence of the relationship between morality judgment and aesthetic judgment.

Publication: Scientific Reports (Peer-Reviewed Journal)

Pub Date: 14, Sep, 2021 Doi:

Keywords: Human Behaviour, Morality (Plenty more sections, figures and references in this research article)

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