나는 죄책감과 같은 감정뿐 아니라 기본적인 도덕 규범도 자연 선택에 의해 설계된 선천적 인간 본성이라고 추측해왔다.

 

며칠 전에 그런 추측을 뒷받침하는 강력한 증거를 보여주는 연구를 발견했다. 2년 전 기사다.

 

The Moral Life of Babies

By PAUL BLOOM

Published: May 5, 2010

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/09/magazine/09babies-t.html?pagewanted=all

 

다음은 이 기사의 하이라이트다.

 

To find out, we tested 8-month-olds by first showing them a character who acted as a helper (for instance, helping a puppet trying to open a box) and then presenting a scene in which this helper was the target of a good action by one puppet and a bad action by another puppet. Then we got the babies to choose between these two puppets. That is, they had to choose between a puppet who rewarded a good guy versus a puppet who punished a good guy. Likewise, we showed them a character who acted as a hinderer (for example, keeping a puppet from opening a box) and then had them choose between a puppet who rewarded the bad guy versus one who punished the bad guy.

 

The results were striking. When the target of the action was itself a good guy, babies preferred the puppet who was nice to it. This alone wasn’t very surprising, given that the other studies found an overall preference among babies for those who act nicely. What was more interesting was what happened when they watched the bad guy being rewarded or punished. Here they chose the punisher. Despite their overall preference for good actors over bad, then, babies are drawn to bad actors when those actors are punishing bad behavior.

 

Paul Bloom과 동료들은 8개월 된 아기가 도덕적 판단으로 보이는 판단을 한다는 점을 실험을 통해 보여주었다. 8개월 밖에 안 된 아기이기 때문에 학습 효과라고 보기 매우 힘들다. 이 발견이 20세기를 지배했던 도덕 발달 이론들을 몽땅 무너뜨렸다고 봐도 무방할 것 같다. 진화 심리학의 승리를 알리는 주요 연구 중 하나로 보인다.

 

 

 

Paul Bloom의 논문들은 여기에서 볼 수 있다.

 

http://www.yale.edu/minddevlab/publications.html

 

 

 

2013년에는 『Just Babies: The origins of good and evil』를 출간한다고 한다. 진화 윤리학을 공부하는 사람을 위한 필독서가 될 것이다.