Andrew L. Thomson and Jason T. Siegel
The Journal Of Positive Psychology
The term elevation (also referred to as moral elevation), described by Thomas Jefferson and later coined by Jonathan Haidt, refers to the suite of feelings people may experience when witnessing an instance of moral beauty. The construct of elevation signifies the emotion felt when a person is a witness to, but not a recipient of, the moral behavior of others. Scholarship examining elevation has burgeoned since Haidt first introduced the construct. Researchers have explored the antecedents of, and outcomes associated with, witnessing instances of moral beauty. The current review will outline the existing scholarship on elevation, highlight conflicting findings, point out critical gaps in the current state of elevation research, and delineate fertile future directions for basic and applied research. Continued investigation of the affective, motivational, and behavioral responses associated with witnessing virtuous actions of others is warranted.
The research is here.