By Daniel A. Hart
Here, Daniel A. Hart analyzes the result of a radical twenty-year longitudinal learn of men's improvement. Integrating a variety of examine techniques, Hart assesses character trait, structural-developmental, and crisis-transformational elements within the learn of lives through the years. the writer then develops an unique framework for realizing the mental similarities and transformations in men's lives.
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Extra resources for Becoming Men: The Development of Aspirations, Values, and Adaptational Styles
Because each stage is "better" or more powerful than the adjacent lower one, normal development (in the absence of gross psychopathology or neurological damage) is believed to proceed from Stage 1 toward Stage 5, without regression. Kohlberg's own longitudinal investigation (Colby, Kohlberg, Gibbs, & Lieberman, 1983) provided solid support for his claims. , the subjects who are followed in this book) provided some confirmatory evidence for Kohlberg' s claim that an individual uses a single mental structure (represented by a stage) in making moral judgments; most of the responses offered by an individual during the course of an interview were characteristic of a single stage, although usually there were a number of responses that seemed representative of other stages as well.
It seems safe to conclude, however, that these higher stages of development are reached by only a fraction of adults. In the Kohlberg study, for instance, only a subset of those men achieving Stage 4 (who are themselves a subset of the adult sample) adopt the relativism and contextualism characteristic of this advanced development. This means that the developmental path sketched by the contextual/ dialectical theorists is followed by only a small number of adults. It is impossible to review the various controversies that rage around Kohlberg's work on moral judgment.
While Levinson's own research is of questionable value for confirming his theory, the research of other investigators seems to refute it. For instance, studies by Costa and McCrae (1978; Costa, McCrae, Zonderman, Barbano, Lebowitz, & Larsen, 1986) find little evidence of age-related shifts in negative emotions, occupational and family dissatisfaction, or sense of inner turmoil. This is contrary to the expectation that these variables ought to be related to the phases and transitions posited in Levinson's model.