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Altruism and Pro Social

In: Philosophy and Psychology

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Altruism and Pro Social Behavior
Social Psychology
Naomi Jackson
Instructor Cheryl V. Browning
Upper Iowa University

ALTRUISM AND PRO SOCIAL BEHAVIOR

One may ask what causes people to jeopardize their own health and well-being to help other people. What is it that inspires individuals to give their time, energy, and money to aid in the betterment of others, even when they receive nothing tangible in return? Altruism involves the unselfish concern for other people. It involves doing things simply out of a desire to help, not because you feel obligated to out of duty, loyalty, or religious. I’ve noticed that everyday life is filled with small acts of altruism, from the person who greets me going into Wal-Mart to the person who gives a generous donation to the march of dimes. Although news stories often focus on a greater scale of altruism, such as a person risking their life to save a child from a burning building that they don’t even know. To giving a generous donation to a local charity. Social Psychologists are interested in understanding why it occurs. Really, what does inspire these acts of kindness? What motivates people to risk their own lives to save a complete stranger? Altruism is one aspect of what Social Psychologists refer to Pro Social behavior. Pro Social behavior refers to any action that benefits other people, no matter what the motive or how the giver benefits from the action. While all altruistic acts are Pro Social, not all Pro Social behaviors completely altruistic. Remember, that pure altruism involves true selflessness. For example, many people help others for a variety of reasons such as rewards, guilt, obligation, even duties. Psychologist have suggested a number of different explanations for why altruism exists, including Biological Reasons: Kinship – we might do more altruistic towards…...

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