PSYCH 2120- Final Exam

PSYCH 2120- Final Exam - PSYCH 2120- FINAL EXAM Altruism:...

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PSYCH 2120- FINAL EXAM Altruism : increasing another’s welfare without any conscious regard for self interest o Selfishness in reverse → concerned and helpful when no benefits are offered or expected in return. Helping : simply giving assistance without any evaluation behind it (ex. giving directions) Why do we Help? (3 theories) 1. Social Exchange Theory o Human interactions are transactions that aim to maximize one’s rewards and minimize ones cost (‘minimx’ strategy) o We help because we get something out of it→ helping is based on social economics o We don’t consciously monitor costs and rewards but such considerations predict out behavior→ ex. donating blood: we weigh costs of donating (needle prick) vs. costs of not donating (guilt), and we weigh benefits of donating (feeling good) vs. benefits of not donating (saving discomfort) Helping as a disguised self- interest o We are eager to help someone whose approval we desire o Helping increases our self worth → makes you feel good about yourself Clary and Snyder→ Six motivations for why people volunteer 1. Values: to act on humanitarian values and concern for others 2. Understanding: to learn about people or learn skills 3. Social: to be part of a group and gain approval 4. Career: to enhance job prospects with experience and contacts 5. Ego Protection: to reduce guilt or escape personal problems 6. Esteem enhancement: to boost self worth and confidence o Weakness to theory: egoism : a motive (supposedly underlying all behavior) to increase one’s own welfare. The opposite of altruism (which aims to increase another’s welfare ) → self-interest motivates all behavior ex. she volunteered for the big sister program, why? Because of the inner rewards? How do you know there are inner rewards? Why else would she volunteer o Social approval motives helping → when approval follows helping, helping increases Empathy as a source of genuine altruism o Willingness to help is influenced by both self-serving and selfless considerations → distress over someone’s suffering motivates us to relieve our upset either by escaping the distressing situation or by helping o Empathy : the vicarious experience of another’s feeling; putting yourself in another’s shoes → especially when we feel attached to someone (Ex.
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mothers suffer when children suffer and rejoice when they feel joy) or someone we can identity with (ex. millions cried over Princess Diana’s death → felt as if they knew her) o We do not focus on our own distress but on the sufferers → genuine sympathy and compassion motivate us to help the person for their own sake o If we feel empathy but know something us will make us feel better (comedy tape), we are not likely to help → we are good to others, when we are so bonded with them (ex. both Jews) and can see some of ourselves in them o Empathy produces helping even toward members f rival groups → people will help even when they believe no one will know about their helping
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This note was uploaded on 04/24/2008 for the course PSYC 2120 taught by Professor Struthers during the Spring '08 term at York University.

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PSYCH 2120- Final Exam - PSYCH 2120- FINAL EXAM Altruism:...

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