Beyond Dominance and Competence
Author(s): Feng Bai
Abstract: Recognition has grown that moral behavior (e.g., generosity) plays a role in status attainment, yet it remains unclear how, why, and when demonstrating moral characteristics enhances status. Drawing on philosophy, anthropology, psychology, and organizational behavior, I critically review a third route to attaining status: virtue, and propose a moral virtue theory of status attainment to provide a generalized account of the role of morality in status attainment. The moral virtue theory posits that acts of virtue elicit feelings of warmth and admiration (for virtue), and willing deference, toward the virtuous actor. I further consider how the scope and priority of moralities and virtues endorsed by a moral community are bound by culture and social class to affect which moral characteristics enhance status. I end by outlining an agenda for future research into the role of virtue in status attainment.
Publication Title: Personality and Social Psychology Review, Advanced Online, May 24,2016
Pub Year: 2016
URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1088868316649297
Keywords: social status, morality, admiration, culture, social class

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