Moral Reframing: A Perspective-Taking Approach to Political Arguments

Authors

  • Issac Baca

Abstract

Moral foundations theory posits that there are five foundations of morality from which Americans make political decisions: 1) Care/Harm, 2) Fairness/Reciprocity, 3) Ingroup/Loyalty, 4) Authority/Respect, and 5) Purity/Sanctity. Previous research finds that liberals primarily endorse foundations 1 and 2, while conservatives primarily endorse foundations 3, 4, and 5. To examine which moral values are most persuasive to liberals and conservatives, political arguments aimed at decreasing support for an issue were reframed to appeal to foundations 1 and 2, or to foundations 3, 4, and 5. Results indicate that
conservatives might be persuaded by arguments grounded in ingroup/loyalty, authority/respect, and purity/sanctity values, but might not be persuaded by arguments grounded in care/harm, or fairness/reciprocity values. Liberals might be persuaded by arguments grounded in any of the five foundations. Moderates were the only group that showed no evidence of persuasion.

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Published

2021-06-30

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Section

Articles