27 of 28 people found the following review helpful
Interesting, engaging and powerful,
This review is from: Moral Tribes: Emotion, Reason, and the Gap Between Us and Them (Hardcover)
I was lucky enough to receive an advance copy of this book (with no intention that I'd review it!). I enjoyed every minute of reading it.
It's on an extremely important topic - the nature of morality. And the contribution Prof Greene makes is an extremely novel one: based on his own psychological studies, he argues that our moral judgments are often a battleground between an intuitive, emotional reaction, and a slower, more deliberative and logical reasoning process. Suppose you can kill one person in order to transplant their organs to save five others. "Don't do it!" says your gut; "But doing so will save more lives!" says the slower, more deliberative part of your brain.
The kicker comes in the final part of the book where he argues that we should normally trust that slow deliberative process over our intuitive judgments. His work in psychology therefore impacts moral philosophy, providing a grand argument for utilitarianism - the idea that one should always do whatever will maximise the sum total of wellbeing in the world.
Greene is a stellar psychologist who's precipitated a massive debate in moral philosophy. And he's managed to present his research in a clear, friendly and engaging way. If you want to learn about cutting-edge research on the nature of morality - and have your own moral views challenged! - then read this book.
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Initial post: 10 Jan 2014, 22:25:28 GMT
Barry O'Connell says:
Thank-you for an insightful and helpful review.
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