Empathic joy and the empathy-altruism hypothesis.
ABSTRACT Three experiments tested whether empathy evokes egoistic motivation to share vicariously in the victim's joy at improvement (the empathic-joy hypothesis) instead of altruistic motivation to increase the victim's welfare (the empathy-altruism hypothesis). In Experiment 1, Ss induced to feel either low or high empathy for a young woman in need were given a chance to help her. Some believed that if they helped they would receive feedback about her improvement; others did not. In Experiments 2 and 3, Ss induced to feel either low or high empathy were given a choice of getting update information about a needy person's condition. Before choosing, they were told the likelihood of the person's condition having improved--and of their experiencing empathic joy--was 20%, was 50%, or was 80%. Results of none of the experiments patterned as predicted by the empathic-joy hypothesis; instead, results of each were consistent with the empathy-altruism hypothesis.
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ABSTRACT: It has been proposed in the literature that there exists a dissociation between the cognitive and the affective components of empathy among individuals with autism spec-trum disorders, among them, Asperger syndrome (AS). The existing results, however, show mixed results. This literature review aims to shed some light on this field by reviewing studies on empathy and theory of mind (ToM; which is a basic requirement towards cognitive empathy) in adolescents with AS. Whereas it seems clear that ToM is impaired, but not absent in this population, the deficit in empathy appears as either specific or global to the cognitive component of empa-thy, depending on whether the measures used are performance or self-report measures, respectively. This literature review is the first of its kind because it is focused on quantitative data obtained using measures of both empathy and ToM. Limitations of the current evidence and future recommenda-tions are discussed.12/2014; 1(4):327-343. DOI:10.1007/s40489-014-0026-5
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ABSTRACT: Performers improvising together describe special moments of ‘being in the zone’ - periods of high performance, synchrony and enhanced sense of togetherness. Existing evidence suggests ¬a possible route for attaining togetherness - interpersonal synchrony, the fine-grained sensory-motor coordination that promotes social connectedness. Here we investigated the physiological characteristics of togetherness using a practice from theater and dance, the mirror game. Pairs of expert improvisers jointly improvised synchronized linear motion, while their motion tracks and cardiovascular activity were continuously monitored. Players also provided dynamic ratings of togetherness while watching video recordings of their games. We identified periods of togetherness using kinematic and subjective markers and assessed their physiological characteristics. The kinematic and the subjective measures of togetherness showed some agreement, with more extensive game-periods being marked by the subjective than the kinematic one. Game rounds with high rates of togetherness were characterized by increased players’ cardiovascular activity, increased correlation of players’ heart rates, and increased motion intensity. By comparing motion segments with similar motion intensity, we showed that moments of togetherness in the mirror game were marked by increased players’ heart rates, regardless of motion intensity. This pattern was robust for the subjectively defined periods of togetherness, while showing a marginal effect for the kinematically defined togetherness. Building upon similar findings in flow research we suggest that the observed increase of players’ heart rates during togetherness periods in the mirror game might indicate the enhanced engagement and enjoyment reported by performers going into ‘the zone’. The suggested approach, combining temporal measurements of kinematic, physiological and subjective responses, demonstrates how the dynamics of spontaneously emerging dyadic statesFrontiers in Human Neuroscience 05/2015; 9(187). DOI:10.3389/fnhum.2015.00187 · 2.90 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The authors develop and test a theory of how public service advertisements function to induce helping responses. Building on Lazarus's general theory of emotion and adaptation, they hypothesize that public service ads designed to reduce the incidence of child abuse stimulate negative emotions; these, in turn, lead to empathic reactions and end with the decision to help. Two field experiments are conducted to test the theory.Journal of Marketing 01/1994; 58(1):56. DOI:10.2307/1252251 · 5.47 Impact Factor