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Abstract

This paper reviews the current literature in the field of moral judgment, specifically, dual-process theories, utilitarian decision-making, and human empathy with its multiple facets. The debate in the field of moral research has never been stopped since competing findings that challenge preexisting knowledge are consistently on the scene. This review paper provides an overview of multiples aspects of current moral judgment research, incorporating behavioral economics, moral philosophy, neuroscience, and social psychology theories that shape moral research in the most recent twenty years. Various theoretical frameworks and empirical evidence against each other are discussed in this paper. Based on existing debates, this review paper emphasizes two main ideas: the first is to uphold and call for a revision and reconciliation of the “dual system” model in current moral decision research; and the second is to note a complex relationship between empathy and utilitarian decision-making, rather than stressing a simple negative association as previously believed. Possible development for moral judgment research can be raised in the future on the foundation of the literature and competing theoretical frameworks.

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