Psychological Self-Help

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disregarding women's views because they don't fit the theory, as some
theorists (including Kohlberg) have done, or instead of assuming that
women are morally inferior, as some males (including Freud) have
done. The moral differences between the sexes are real and important
but not clearly understood by most people. For example, using
Kohlberg's 6-point moral development scale, women frequently score
low, often at stage 3 (where there is an emphasis on interpersonal
relationships and helping or pleasing others). Yet, women ordinarily
consider themselves just as moral as men if not more so. Let's see if
we can clarify our own values by understanding exactly how women's
values differ from men's. 
According to Kohlberg, the childhood concern of males for
"pleasing others" gives way in stage 4 to "living by the rules," in stage
5 a few people "build a better world" and in stage 6 even fewer live by
"universal principles of justice." According to Gilligan, females often
remain concerned with relationships, progressing as they grow older
from pleasing others for personal gain to building close, intimate,
selfless, giving relationships in which they do good for others (and get
pleasure from doing so). Thus, many women adopt the basic moral
principles of the Golden Rule and act on those principles by giving to
people in need (which Kohlberg assumes only a few middle-aged men
do in stage 6). In short, women's morals seem to develop differently,
even though they may end up doing the same things as highly moral
men. What are these developmental differences? 
Men become much more involved than women in intellectually
figuring out what is fair and what are individual rights, such as in
making rules (in religion and the family) and laws (in politics). For
men, differences of opinion ought to be worked out via logical
arguments and courts of law; for women, differences should be
worked out by talking to each other, considering each other's
viewpoints, and understanding each other's needs. Men are more
concerned with becoming independent, "being their own man," being
free to do their own thing, and being as successful as they can be.
Women tend to be more concerned with fulfilling their responsibilities
to others than with assuring their own rights, more involved with
building caring relationships than "breaking away" to make their own
way, more into helping others than getting ahead themselves. Thus,
one can see why women could become concerned that men's vigilant
defense of individual rights and "freedom" might undermine our sense
of responsibility for others and lead to indifference to others in need. 
Men and women: 90% use both care and justice values; however, 65% focus on one
value more than the other, as follows: 
Men: 93% have a justice focus; 7% have a care focus; 0% have
justice absent; 38% have care absent (62% have some care). 
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