Posted: October 16th, 2022
5 hours agoThe Heinz Dilemma
The Heinz dilemma was a theory made by Kohlberg. Kohlberg studied children, pre-teens and teen to adult human beings based on their moral development. The Heinz dilemma was about a woman diagnosed with cancer and a husband who could not afford the medication to save her life because the pharmacist wanted to make a large profit; so in order to save his wife Heinz (The husband) stole the medication. The thought process was based on whether Heinz did the right thing or not and then categories those answers into three stages: pre-conventional, conventional,post conventional. Under these three stages remained subcategories that involved different moral structures of each age group described above.
I believe that the Heinz theory is can be expanded into more categories because of different cultures and influences that build a person’s morality. For instance, the equality or freedom right movement of African Americans is a great example of how culture influences people’s moral development. A white slave owner did not value the lives of African American people and they taught their children; who then taught their children that African Americans were inferior to white men and women. They may have never even got passed stage one or pre-conventional stage of Kohlberg vs African American such as Martin Luther King Jr believed that all lives were valued no matter what skin color you are and therefore he reached the post conventional stage; or the ultimate moral person where they set aside law and self interest for the needs of others. They valued life over anything.
A child could remain in any of these three stages since morality can be taught, however most children under the age of 9 will more than likely fall into the first stage because they are learning rules and consequences, but there is always an exception to this rule.
2.Post by Susana Diaz
1 day agoRe: Week 3 | Discussion – Moral Development
An American psychologist by the name of Lawrence Kohlberg had a specific skill that involved moral dilemmas. One of these was the now famous Heinz dilemma. Which goes as; Heinz wife was dying, and he knew of a local chemist who had a specific medicine that could possibly save the life of his wife. Heinz pleaded with the chemist who was pricing this medicine outrageously high if he could lower the price or if he would accept partial payment. The chemist did not budge, by this point Heinz was desperate to save his wife so much that he broke into the chemist’s office and stole the medicine.
Moral development involves thoughts, feelings, and behaviors regarding rules and conventions about what people should do in their interactions with other people. (Vozzola, 2014)
A person’s perspective and decisions are influenced by one’s moral development in a variety of ways, but this moral development begins at a very young age and may change as we age and deal with life experiences. For example, when we are young, we are taught right from wrong and do not question many things but as we get older, we see the bigger picture of why certain decisions or actions are made. So, the decisions made as a child may be drastically different as adult.
Erik Erickson’s development stages I find to be influential to moral development since his stages begin at a very young age as well. The third stage of Erickson’s developmental stages is initiative vs. guilt and usually takes place in the preschool years between the ages of 3-5. In this stage a child becomes more social and begins to feel guilt hence the knowledge of right from wrong and in my opinion this is where moral development may begin due to their mental capacity being able to understand a bit more than say an infant or a toddler.
Santrock, J. Life-Span Development. [Chegg]. Retrieved from
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