PSC 151 Final Review

PSC 151 Final Review - 1 PSC 151 Final Review (Chapters...

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1 PSC 151 Final Review (Chapters 12-16) Chapter 12: Helping Altruism: A motive to increase another’s welfare without conscious regard for one’s self- interests. i. Altruism is selfishness in reverse. Social-exchange theory (psychological): The theory that human interactions are transactions that aims to maximize one’s rewards and minimize one’s costs. i. Human interactions are guided by a “social economics.” We exchange not only material goods and money but also social goods – love, services, information, and status. Rewards that motivate helping may be eternal or internal. i. Rewards may be internal. Helping increases our sense of self-worth. Egoism : A motive (supposedly underlying all behavior) to increase one’s own welfare. The opposite of altruism, which aims to increase another’s welfare. Guilt: i. Our eagerness to do good after doing bad reflects our need to reduce private guilt and restore a shaken self-image. People, who suffer the loss of a spouse or a child, whether through death or separation, often undergo a period of intense self-preoccupation, which restrains giving to others. The feel bad-do good effect occurs with people whose attentions is on others, people for whom altruism is therefore rewarding. Helping softens a bad mood and sustains a good mood. i. A positive mood is in turn, conductive to positive thoughts and positive self-esteem, which predispose up to positive behavior. Norms, the oughts of our lives, are social expectations. They prescribe proper behavior. Researchers have identified two social norms that motivate altruism: i. Reciprocity norm (sociological): An expectation that people will help, not hurt, those who have helped them. a. To those who help us, we should return help, not harm. b. Reciprocity within social networks helps define the social capital – the supportive connections, information flow, trust and cooperative actions that keep a community healthy. c. Social capital : The mutual support and cooperation enabled by a social network. Neighbors keeping an eye on one another’s homes is social capital in action. d. When people cannot reciprocate, they may feel threatened and demeaned by accepting aid. ii. Social responsibility norm: An expectation that people will help those needing help. a. People in collectivist cultures (i.e., India) support the social-responsibility norm more strongly than in individualistic cultures (i.e., USA). b. Responses are closely tied with attributions . If we attribute the need to an uncontrollable predicament, we help. If we attribute the need to the person’s
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2 choices, fairness does not require us to help; we say it’s the person’s own fault. Norms, the
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This note was uploaded on 12/11/2009 for the course PSC 39367 taught by Professor Johnson during the Fall '09 term at UC Davis.

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PSC 151 Final Review - 1 PSC 151 Final Review (Chapters...

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