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Finding the moral space: Rethinking morality, social class and worldviews

Highlights•A relational perspective allows us to understand moral positions as simultaneously class markers and attempts to establish self-worth•People demonstrate moral consistency in how they deal with both private and public dilemmas•Analogous to the space of life styles, also the moral space is structurally similar to the space of social classes•The worldview of the economic upper middle class is strongly characterized by entrepreneurialism, while their cultural counterparts are drawn to a more institutional-therapeutic morality.•The difference between fatalism and egalitarianism corresponds to a distinction between the cultural and economic lower classesAbstractAs social beings, we are compelled to take moral position toward one another but the nature of the relationship between morality and social structure remains a point of discussion. This article proposes a relational perspective on the debate, which involves reconceptualizing moral views as simultaneously status markers and attempts to achieve self-worth. In order to do so, the argument borrows from Bourdieu a depiction of the class structure as a multidimensional space and follows Douglas’s understanding of culture and worldviews. The argument is supported by an analysis of an experimental survey design, relying on vignette questions to gauge moral worldviews. The data are processed using Multiple Correspondence Analysis, revealing that (1) people exhibit a consistency in their moral position-taking and that (2) a strong homology exists between the moral space and the space of social classes

یافتن فضای اخلاقی: بازاندیشی در اخلاق، طبقه اجتماعی و جهان‌بینی‌ها

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