This week we learn about Kohlberg’s 6 stages of moral development. Carol Gilligan was critical of Kohlberg’s theory because his research sample consisted solely of males.
Gilligan claimed that “women, more than men, were more likely to be concerned with issues of caring, responsibility for others, and the connection of themselves to other people and real-world dilemmas, while men’s reasoning was more likely to focus on justice, rights, and prioritising competing principles” (Galotti, 2017, p.388).
Do you agree with Gilligan’s belief that moral development differs in males and females? Discuss your thoughts on this issue. Support your stance with research and examples. Remember to cite your source(s) using APA style
Replied to two peers
Peers agree with Gilligan’s belief that moral development differs in males and females. Gilligan’s work, which focuses on sex differences in moral reasoning, the perception of violence, the resolution of sexual dilemmas, and abortion decisions, poses a major challenge to Kohlberg’s theory by introducing a feminist perspective of moral development. (Muuss,1988).
Men tend to organise social relationships in a hierarchical order and subscribe to the morality of rights. Females value interpersonal connectedness, care, sensitivity, and responsibility to people. (Muus, 1988). I agree with these findings, as they are even conveyed through the roles men and women play.
However, that being said, I believe it’s harder to generalise now, as men are taking on caring-like roles, and women are taking on heroic roles. Partners are being just that, they are partners that split the roles. Dads help with infants and small children a lot more than they did in my Parent’s generation.
And women are working and doing jobs that used to only be for men. Fathers used to defend their families, and mothers nurture them. Now mothers and fathers share roles.
I believe men consider things they didn’t use to consider, and the same for women. It amazes me how much more sensitive the younger generation of men are when it comes to sharing household responsibilities, and child care. And so many women are more self-sufficient, they know how to fix a flat tire.
My daughter even fixed her own washing machine recently when it stopped operating. She googled how to do it, got out the tools, and fixed it herself, even though she has a man in the house. Therefore, I think it would be interesting to apply the same exact studies on the younger men and women of today and see if the results would differ now.