Is Morality Hardwired in Us?

Is morality a sixth sense that’s in all of us, and is it perhaps a product of our biological evolution? Writing recently in The New York Times Magazine, Harvard psychology professor Steven Pinker suggests that morality may well be hardwired. And he points to fascinating new research that backs up this belief. Pinker’s article covers pretty much the same ground as does this engaging Radio Lab podcast (MP3iTunesFeedWeb Site). Taking an hour-long look at the “science of morality,” the program gets into some fascinating stuff. It gets into the great Trolley moral dilemma, into what brain scans (MRI’s) reveal when human brains grapple with moral questions, and into how scientists think that we inherited moral instincts from our primate ancestors. You’ll learn all about how morality is our “inner chimp.” If this is not enough, you can also listen to Pinker’s interview yesterday on NPR’s Talk of the Nation. Get it here.

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