Embracing the Other: Philosophical, Psychological, and Historical Perspectives on Altruism

Embracing the Other: Philosophical, Psychological, and Historical Perspectives on Altruism

by Pearl Oliner, Samuel P. Oliner, Lawrence Baron, Lawrence Blum
     
 

ISBN-10: 0814761909

ISBN-13: 9780814761908

Pub. Date: 07/01/1995

Publisher: New York University Press

All but buried for most of the twentieth century, the concept of altruism has re-emerged in this last quarter as a focus of intense scholarly inquiry and general public interest. In the wake of increased consciousness of the human potential for destructiveness, both scholars and the general public are seeking interventions which will not only inhibit the process, but…  See more details below

Overview

All but buried for most of the twentieth century, the concept of altruism has re-emerged in this last quarter as a focus of intense scholarly inquiry and general public interest. In the wake of increased consciousness of the human potential for destructiveness, both scholars and the general public are seeking interventions which will not only inhibit the process, but may in fact chart a new creative path toward a global community. Largely initiated by a group of pioneering social psychologists, early questions on altruism centered on its motivation and development primarily in the context of contrived laboratory experiments. Although publications on the topic have been considerable over the last several years, and now represent the work of representatives from many disciplines of inquiry, this volume is distinguished from others in several ways.Embracing the Other emerged primarily as a response to recent research on an extraordinary manifestation of real-life altruism, namely to recent studies of non-Jewish rescuers of Jews during World War II. It is the work of a multi-disciplinary and international group of scholars, including philosophers, social psychologists, historians, sociologists, and educators, challenging several prevailing conceptual definitions and motivational sources of altruism. The book combines both new empirical and historical research as well as theoretical and philosophical approaches and includes a lengthy section addressing the practical implications of current thinking on altruism for society at large. The result is a multi-textured work, addressing critical issues in varied disciplines, while centered on shared themes.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780814761908
Publisher:
New York University Press
Publication date:
07/01/1995
Edition description:
Reissue
Pages:
474
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.15(d)

Table of Contents

Contributors
Pt. 1Preface and Introduction
Preface3
Introduction6
Pt. 2Philosophical, Definitional, and Conceptual Issues
Introduction19
1Empathy and Protest: Two Roots of Heroic Altruism22
2Altruism and the Moral Value of Rescue: Resisting Persecution, Racism, and Genocide30
3Rescue, Righteousness, and Morality48
Pt. 3Sociobiology and Moral Altruism
Introduction69
4Altruism and Human Nature: Resolving the Evolutionary Paradox73
5Altruism and the Evolution of Civil Society104
Pt. 4The Development and Enactment of Altruism
Introduction133
6The Development of Altruistic Personality142
7The Self in Moral Agency: Toward a Theoretical Model of the Ideal Altruistic Personality170
8Self, We, and Other(s): Schemata, Distinctiveness, and Altruism194
9Motivations of People Who Helped Jews Survive the Nazi Occupation213
10Predicting Prosocial Commitment in Different Social Contexts226
11Helping in Late Life253
Pt. 5Embracing the "Outsider"
Introduction279
12The Question of Altruism during the Armenian Genocide of 1915282
13The Dutchness of Dutch Rescuers: The National Dimension of Altruism306
14The Role of Polish Nuns in the Rescue of Jews, 1939-1945328
15Political Altruism: A Case Study335
Pt. 6Promoting Altruistic Bonds
Introduction363
16Promoting Extensive Altruistic Bonds: A Conceptual Elaboration and Some Pragmatic Implications369
17The Origins of Caring, Helping, and Nonaggression: Parental Socialization, the Family System, Schools, and Cultural Influence390
18Altruism among Alcoholics413
19Altruism and Extensivity in the Baha'i Religion420
20Altruism in the Socialist World433
Index455

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