The Nature of Human Altruism – Reaction Paper Tuhin Chakraborty The bulk of this paper was a review of experiments that were conducted regarding issues of human selfishness and altruism. It was an easy read, and clearly explained all the steps of the experiments, as well as what conclusions could be drawn from them. I especially enjoyed it because it changed my previously held beliefs regarding altruism and selfishness. The paper started with a concept with which I was originally unfamiliar – altruistic punishment. The ultimatum game was straightforward, but in its analysis of the experiment, the paper presented an interesting view of altruism by stating that rejections in the ultimatum game are viewed as altruistic acts. Upon further analysis, by putting myself in the shoes of the recipient, I came to the conclusion that I, too, would reject unfair proposals. However, though regarding that action as altruistic makes sense when explained, it originally seemed counterintuitive. Similarly, the results of the third party punishment game were unexpected. I would have thought that most people would not spend any money to punish the allocator, especially since they are not directly affected by a violation of the fairness
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This test prep was uploaded on 04/21/2008 for the course NEUROBIO 95 taught by Professor Platt during the Spring '08 term at Duke.