Behavior: Toward Moral Maturity

A group of young inmates in a New England reformatory began meeting regularly last year to talk about a subject that normally receives little attention in prisons: ethics. They were participating in a novel experiment designed by Harvard Psychologist Lawrence Kohlberg to teach moral judgment—not by sermons, but through open discussions.

When the reformatory sessions began, many of the boys agreed with the philosophy of one teen-age felon who insisted that "If I'm not gettin' nothin', I'm not givin' nothin'." But now they share the outlook of another inmate who voices a concept that would have seemed alien to them before they...

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