COVID-19 Pandemic, Rationality of Choice and Moral Dilemmas

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Abstract

In his article, the author describes the COVID-19 pandemic as a unique situation on a global scale, which has brought a number of eternal questions from the philosophical-speculative plane to the most practical. In fact, it made it a matter of “life and death” for every person. First of all, this is a question of moral choice in a situation with a high degree of uncertainty — between personal freedom and personal restrictions for the benefit of other people. The article also analyzes strategies to fight the COVID-19 pandemic in different countries and the consequences of their implementation in relation to moral dilemmas. Based on an analysis of international experience, the psychological features of the introduction of restrictions and external state and public control (as examples of the implementation of a universal rational approach) are discussed. The author takes into account socio-economic statistics accumulated over two years (excess mortality, gross domestic product, etc.), which show that in the context of a pandemic, a rational construct, which provides for the renunciation of some personal freedoms by citizens for the sake of the public good, is preferable to an empirical one, in which people they are given the right to make their own moral choice - to renounce freedoms or not. At the same time, the author comes to the conclusion that, along with the advantages, rationalization can have disadvantages. Namely: long-term risks associated with society’s gradual abandonment of personal freedoms and democracy and a return to an authoritarian system.

General Information

Keywords: moral dilemma, moral choice, rationality, rationality of choice, prisoner`s dilemma, freedom, safety, decision-making, COVID-19

Journal rubric: Axiological and Personality-Oriented Basis of Cooperation and Interaction of Educational Environment Subjects

Article type: scientific article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.17759/bppe.2023200308

Received: 27.05.2023

Accepted:

For citation: Pervushin N.S. COVID-19 Pandemic, Rationality of Choice and Moral Dilemmas [Elektronnyi resurs]. Vestnik prakticheskoi psikhologii obrazovaniya = Bulletin of Psychological Practice in Education, 2023. Vol. 20, no. 3, pp. 102–115. DOI: 10.17759/bppe.2023200308. (In Russ., аbstr. in Engl.)

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Information About the Authors

Nikolay S. Pervushin, MA in Sociology, Senior Lecturer, Department of Personality Psychology, Junior Researcher, The Center for Behavior Analysis, V. Zelman Institute for the Medicine and Psychology, Novosibirsk State University, Novosibirsk, Russia, ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-4413-0205, e-mail: nickd17@yandex.ru

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