Moral Rationalization and the Integration of Situational Factors and Psychological Processes in Immoral Behavior

  title={Moral Rationalization and the Integration of Situational Factors and Psychological Processes in Immoral Behavior},
  author={Jo-Ann Tsang},
  journal={Review of General Psychology},
  pages={25 - 50}
  • Jo-Ann Tsang
  • Published 1 March 2002
  • Psychology
  • Review of General Psychology
Moral rationalization is an individual's ability to reinterpret his or her immoral actions as, in fact, moral. It arises out of a conflict of motivations and a need to see the self as moral. This article presents a model of evil behavior demonstrating how situational factors that obscure moral relevance can interact with moral rationalization and lead to a violation of moral principles. Concepts such as cognitive dissonance and self-affirmation are used to explain the processes underlying moral… 

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