There is a brilliant talk by Jonathan Haidt of the University of Virginia, introducing an EDGE website conference on the neuroscience of Moral Psychology. It is worth listening to the whole talk by scrolling to the video link, but there is also the full text of his remarks.
His most interesting remarks concern just how focused most psychology is what he calls the WEIRD population using the approach from: ‘The Weirdest People in the World’ by Joe Henrich, Steve Heine and Ara Norenzayan article in the Bulletin of Behavioral Science. Most psychology experiments focus on Western Educated Rational Industrial Rich Democratic population and therefore are a very limited guide to the psychology of humanity as a whole. And this is particularly important for moral psychology.
I have referred previously to his work as part of the Moral Values Foundation at link, but I think that in this talk he extends his view to encompass everything from the philosopher David Hume, the links to autism and Aspserger’s syndrome of Simon Baron Cohen that particularly interest me, our tendencies to seek confirmation of our beliefs rather than contrary data, as well as to his own work on happiness.
I will post other talks from this interesting conference as they become available.