chapter  1
22 Pages

Moral Psychology: The Grand Convergence

This chapter proposes to do justice to the media exemplars' rich stories by exploring the recurring humility-hubris dichotomy and by integrating it with the latest psychological research on these and related concepts. Humility has long been considered a key virtue among the classical Greek philosophers. Psychologists have looked closely at what motivates our need for 'self-enhancement' and how that need is linked to other personality traits. The duality of hubris and humility also speaks to an even more fundamental dimension of the human condition. Starting from a healthy awareness of one's limitations and imperfections, true humility calls for us to be continually receptive to new knowledge and even different ways of knowing. Self-awareness and openness cultivate clear-eyed perspective on the roles we play and of the roles of others. This transcendence of self-importance and of the tendency to see others in relatively narrow, utilitarian terms, is a critical feature of humility.