What Does Moral Functioning Entail?

  • Lawrence J. Walker
Part of the Issues in Children’s and Families’ Lives book series (IICL, volume 5)


The past several years have been marked by renewed interest and vigorous debate regarding character formation and moral development. This situation has been provoked partly by the clash of moral values apparent in stridently competing worldviews; by recurrent observations regarding the claimed deterioration in moral standards and behavior in our society; and by frequently voiced concerns regarding the adequacy of the moral socialization that typically occurs in many contexts, including families, schools, peers, and the media. This chapter sets out the scope of the moral domain to keep us mindful of its breadth and complexity and to help guide our attempts to nurture moral maturity in children and adolescents. The enormity of the enterprise is often overwhelming. The recurring risk we face as we attempt to make sense of morality and the factors that foster its functioning is a loss of perspective that occurs as we focus on and become invested in a particular theory, aspect of development, or intervention program.


Psychological Functioning Moral Development Moral Issue Moral Character Moral Education 
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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2004

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  • Lawrence J. Walker

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