Psykologisk Institut

The relation between Honesty-Humility and moral concerns as expressed in language

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  • Karolina A. Ścigała
  • Ioanna Arkoudi, Danmarks Tekniske Universitet
  • ,
  • Christoph Schild, Max Planck Institute for the Study of Crime, RPTU Kaiserslautern-Landau, University of Siegen
  • ,
  • Stefan Pfattheicher
  • Ingo Zettler, Københavns Universitet

Does the basic trait Honesty-Humility predict the type of moral concerns people express in language? We explore whether Honesty-Humility relates to the expression of five moral concerns in language—namely, care/harm, justice/fairness, loyalty/betrayal, authority/subversion, and sanctity/degradation—as conceptualized by the Moral Foundations Theory. Using Natural Language Processing, we screened 17,217 (un)ethical justifications—i.e., reasons for behaving (un)ethically—for the presence of the five moral concerns (N = 901). We found that Honesty-Humility related positively to justice/fairness concerns, but it did not relate to care/harm, loyalty/betrayal, authority/subversion, and sanctity/degradation concerns. Our findings thus suggest that justice/fairness concerns might serve as one of the mechanisms relating Honesty-Humility to anti- and prosocial behavior.

TidsskriftJournal of Research in Personality
StatusUdgivet - apr. 2023

Bibliografisk note

Funding Information:
This investigation was funded by grants from the Carlsberg Foundation (CF16-0444) and the Independent Research Fund Denmark (7024-00057B) to the last author.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023

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