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dc.contributor.authorStubbersfield, Joseph M.
dc.contributor.authorDean, Lewis G.
dc.contributor.authorSheikh, Sana
dc.contributor.authorLaland, Kevin N.
dc.contributor.authorCross, Catharine P.
dc.date.accessioned2019-06-06T16:30:02Z
dc.date.available2019-06-06T16:30:02Z
dc.date.issued2019-06-04
dc.identifier.citationStubbersfield , J M , Dean , L G , Sheikh , S , Laland , K N & Cross , C P 2019 , ' Social transmission favours the ‘morally good’ over the ‘merely arousing’ ' , Palgrave Communications , vol. 5 , 3 . https://doi.org/10.1057/s41599-019-0269-yen
dc.identifier.issn2055-1045
dc.identifier.otherPURE: 259224618
dc.identifier.otherPURE UUID: 93762a1e-36c2-4810-b611-42c8e3b3dfc7
dc.identifier.otherRIS: urn:0CF95C42059093A2420C3BA23BF7A61B
dc.identifier.otherRIS: Stubbersfield2019
dc.identifier.otherScopus: 85066616156
dc.identifier.otherORCID: /0000-0001-8110-8408/work/60427418
dc.identifier.otherORCID: /0000-0002-2457-0900/work/60630328
dc.identifier.otherWOS: 000472956800002
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10023/17837
dc.descriptionAuthors thank the John Templeton Foundation for financial support (Grant #40128 to K.N.L.).en
dc.description.abstractMoral stories are pervasive in human culture, forming the basis of religious texts, folklore, and newspaper articles. We used a linear transmission chain procedure to test three competing hypotheses: (1) that moral content in general is preferentially transmitted between individuals compared to non-moral content; (2) that negativity bias leads specifically to morally bad content being preferentially transmitted; and (3) that a bias towards pro-social information leads specifically to morally good content being preferentially transmitted. While we found no support for a bias for moral content in general, we did find that morally good content was transmitted with greater fidelity than neutral or morally bad content, with ratings of morally good content but not morally bad content predicting transmission. Moral content, therefore, appears to be particularly culturally potent when it describes the ‘virtuous’ rather than the ‘sinful’. A second study repeated the first but also tested the influence of physiological arousal on transmission by measuring the electrodermal activity of participants. This study also found that morally good content was transmitted with greater fidelity than neutral or morally bad content and that physiological arousal had a negative effect on transmission with more arousing material being less faithfully transmitted. These results suggest that the communication of content relating to moral virtue might serve to avoid negative impression formation and promote social bonding, and that this might partially explain the ubiquity of moral content in human culture.
dc.format.extent11
dc.language.isoeng
dc.relation.ispartofPalgrave Communicationsen
dc.rightsCopyright © The Author(s) 2019. Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.en
dc.subjectBF Psychologyen
dc.subjectDASen
dc.subject.lccBFen
dc.titleSocial transmission favours the ‘morally good’ over the ‘merely arousing’en
dc.typeJournal articleen
dc.description.versionPublisher PDFen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews.School of Biologyen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews.Centre for Biological Diversityen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews.Scottish Oceans Instituteen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews.Institute of Behavioural and Neural Sciencesen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews.Centre for Social Learning & Cognitive Evolutionen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews.Centre for Research into Equality, Diversity & Inclusionen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews.School of Psychology and Neuroscienceen
dc.identifier.doihttps://doi.org/10.1057/s41599-019-0269-y
dc.description.statusPeer revieweden


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