Evolution of Moral Sense and Moral Judgement

  • Dita ŠamánkováEmail author
  • Marek Preiss
  • Tereza Příhodová


This chapter describes gradual introduction of evolutionary science into ethical studies; starting with the nineteenth century Charles Darwin’s notion that cooperativeness and altruism present an advantage in the group survival struggle, it continues to Edward O. Wilson’s contemporary synthesis of evolutionary science, anthropology, zoology, ethology, and population genetics under the umbrella of sociobiology. Latest theories of the evolutional conditionality of psychological and behavioural elements of cooperativeness (such as empathy, sense of fairness, etc.) are explained; special attention is paid to the evolutionary old behavioural patterns of disgust, as well as their cultural modifications in the development of ethical concepts. In contrast to the rationalist psychological models, the role of basic moral emotions coded in the ancient limbic neurohumoral systems is accentuated as an inevitable prerequisite of complex moral sentiments emerging in result of subsequent cortical integrations.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dita Šamánková
    • 1
    Email author
  • Marek Preiss
    • 2
  • Tereza Příhodová
    • 3
  1. 1.The National Institute of Mental HealthKlecanyCzech Republic
  2. 2.The National Institute of Mental HealthKlecanyCzech Republic
  3. 3.The National Institute of Mental HealthKlecanyCzech Republic

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