Moral Disengagement: How People Do Harm and Live with Themselves
This insightful textbook asks the question: How do otherwise considerate human beings do cruel things and still live in peace with themselves? Dr. Bandura provides a definitive exposition of the psychosocial mechanism by which people selectively disengage their moral self-sanctions from their harmful conduct. They do so by sanctifying their harmful behaviour as serving worthy causes; absolving themselves of blame; minimizing the harmful effects of their actions; dehumanizing those they maltreat, and blaming them for bringing the suffering on themselves.
Dr. Bandura’s theory of moral disengagement is uniquely broad in scope. Theories of morality focus almost exclusively at the individual level. He insightfully extends the disengagement of morality to the social-system level through which wide-spread inhumanities are perpetrated. This masterwork by one of the most influential psychologists and thinkers of our time is important reading for all Psychology students and is particularly relevant for Social Psychology courses.