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Young children's behavioral and emotional responses to different social norm violations.
J Exp Child Psychol. 2016 10; 150:364-379.JE

Abstract

From an early age, children can talk meaningfully about differences between moral and conventional norms. But does their understanding of these differences manifest itself in their actual behavioral and emotional reactions to norm violations? And do children discriminate between norm violations that affect either themselves or a third party? Two studies (N=224) were conducted in which children observed conventional game rule violations and moral transgressions that either disadvantaged themselves directly or disadvantaged an absent third party. Results revealed that 3- and 5-year-olds evaluated both conventional and moral transgressions as normative breaches and protested against them. However, 5-year-olds also clearly discriminated these types of transgressions along further dimensions in that (a) they tattled largely on the moral violation and less on the conventional violation and (b) they showed stronger emotional reactions to moral violations compared to conventional violations. The 3-year-olds' responses to moral and conventional transgressions, however, were less discriminatory, and these younger children responded rather similarly to both kinds of violations. Importantly, most children intervened both as victims of the transgression and as unaffected third parties alike, providing strong evidence for their agent-neutral understanding of social norms.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, 04103 Leipzig, Germany. Electronic address: susanne_hardecker@eva.mpg.de.Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich (LMU Munich), 80539 Munich, Germany.Technische Universität Chemnitz (TU Chemnitz), 09111 Chemnitz, Germany.Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, 04103 Leipzig, Germany.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

27429365

Citation

Hardecker, Susanne, et al. "Young Children's Behavioral and Emotional Responses to Different Social Norm Violations." Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, vol. 150, 2016, pp. 364-379.
Hardecker S, Schmidt MFH, Roden M, et al. Young children's behavioral and emotional responses to different social norm violations. J Exp Child Psychol. 2016;150:364-379.
Hardecker, S., Schmidt, M. F. H., Roden, M., & Tomasello, M. (2016). Young children's behavioral and emotional responses to different social norm violations. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 150, 364-379. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jecp.2016.06.012
Hardecker S, et al. Young Children's Behavioral and Emotional Responses to Different Social Norm Violations. J Exp Child Psychol. 2016;150:364-379. PubMed PMID: 27429365.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Young children's behavioral and emotional responses to different social norm violations. AU - Hardecker,Susanne, AU - Schmidt,Marco F H, AU - Roden,Meike, AU - Tomasello,Michael, Y1 - 2016/07/16/ PY - 2016/03/22/received PY - 2016/06/24/revised PY - 2016/06/26/accepted PY - 2016/7/19/entrez PY - 2016/7/19/pubmed PY - 2017/11/29/medline KW - Emotions KW - First- vs. third-party involvement KW - Moral development KW - Moral/conventional distinction KW - Norm transgressions KW - Social norms SP - 364 EP - 379 JF - Journal of experimental child psychology JO - J Exp Child Psychol VL - 150 N2 - From an early age, children can talk meaningfully about differences between moral and conventional norms. But does their understanding of these differences manifest itself in their actual behavioral and emotional reactions to norm violations? And do children discriminate between norm violations that affect either themselves or a third party? Two studies (N=224) were conducted in which children observed conventional game rule violations and moral transgressions that either disadvantaged themselves directly or disadvantaged an absent third party. Results revealed that 3- and 5-year-olds evaluated both conventional and moral transgressions as normative breaches and protested against them. However, 5-year-olds also clearly discriminated these types of transgressions along further dimensions in that (a) they tattled largely on the moral violation and less on the conventional violation and (b) they showed stronger emotional reactions to moral violations compared to conventional violations. The 3-year-olds' responses to moral and conventional transgressions, however, were less discriminatory, and these younger children responded rather similarly to both kinds of violations. Importantly, most children intervened both as victims of the transgression and as unaffected third parties alike, providing strong evidence for their agent-neutral understanding of social norms. SN - 1096-0457 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/27429365/Young_children's_behavioral_and_emotional_responses_to_different_social_norm_violations_ L2 - https://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S0022-0965(16)30069-8 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -