Benefits of Empathy-Induced Altruism
Empathy-induced altruism offers a number of benefits. Most obvious are the benefits that accrue to individuals whose needs elicit empathic concern, but research suggests that empathy-induced altruistic motivation can also benefit groups in need. It may even benefit the person experiencing this motivation. The potential benefits discussed in this chapter are: More, more sensitive, and less fickle help; less aggression and derogation of the victims of injustice; increased cooperation and care in conflict situations, including conflict in bargaining and negotiations, ethnic, religious, and political conflicts, and racial conflicts in educational settings; improved attitudes toward, and action on behalf of, stigmatized groups; more positive close relationships, including friendships and romantic relationships; and better mental and physical health for the altruistic helper.
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