I’m trying to study for my Psychology course and I need some help to understand this question.
Requirement:Let’s jump right in!
Thomas Hobbes famously described the lives of humans as “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short” – the implication being that people are fundamentally, even inherently, mean and cruel.
Charles Darwin on the other hand, wrote that sympathy is a vital component of human nature: “sympathy will have been increased through natural selection…for those communities which include the greatest number of the most sympathetic members, would flourish best, and rear the greatest number of offspring.”
IMPORTANT: Here’s how to answer this.
- If your last name begins with A-M, you’re arguing that people are mean.
- If your last name begins with N-Z, you’re arguing that people are kind.
Remember to post twice: once to the prompt above and once to a student who took the opposite viewpoint as you.
( at least 300 words per post)
( my name begins with Z)
I will show you my classmates post when you take this discussion.
Here are your readings for this week:
- Peace Among Primates (Links to an external site.). Anyone who says peace is not part of human nature knows too little about primates, including ourselves.
- Changes in Dispositional Empathy in American College Students Over Time: A Meta-Analysis. Is empathy declining? Can anything be done about it?
- Enhancing Compassion: A Randomized Controlled Trial of a Compassion Cultivation Training Program. Note that two of the instructors in this class (Week 8’s Prof. Simon-Thomas and Week 9’s Prof. Goldin) co-wrote this article. (Links to an external site.)
- The Baby in the Well. The Case Against Empathy. (Links to an external site.) Our guest instructor for week 4, Prof. Bloom, authored this article that appeared in the magazine The New Yorker.
- I Was Bloodied and Dazed. Beirut Strangers Treated Me Like a Friend. A Beirut resident reflects on how people rushed to help in the aftermath of explosions in this New York Times piece.