Articles on Empathy

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Ted Bundy, a day before his execution in January 1989. AP Photo/Mark Foley

How to distinguish a psychopath from a ‘shy-chopath

Psychologists are debating whether the presence of one trait – boldness – is the key to determining if someone is a psychopath, or just a garden-variety criminal.
Your cold, hard list is no match for hot emotions. Glenn Carstens-Peters/Unsplash

A rational checklist is no match for emotions in matters of the heart

A cold, logical list of attributes sought in a partner is cast aside by the hot emotions that come up in real life. A psychology researcher explains how this 'hot-cold empathy gap' works in dating.
To imagine is to form a mental image, to think, believe, dream, picture. Shutterstock

How creativity can help us cultivate moral imagination

The poet Percy Bysshe Shelley believed that we can exercise our moral imagination 'in the same manner as exercise strengthens a limb'. Here, then, are some tips for fostering empathy through art.
Catnip induces changes in cat behavior. Anna Hoychuk

Is it unethical to give your cat catnip?

Catnip can induce changes in cat behavior. An expert argues that giving it to cats raises questions about human power and animal autonomy.
Research shows that a parent’s level of generosity and charitable behaviour is linked with their child’s display of the same behaviours. (Shutterstock)

How to infuse your family with the spirit of generosity this Christmas

Children start developing empathy and compassion as toddlers and should have a good understanding of generosity by age nine. Here are five thoughtful ways parents can help foster these behaviours.
Training in improvisational theatre enables health professionals to learn deeper empathy, as well as mental agility and other clinical skills. (Shutterstock)

How theatre training can boost your doctor’s empathy

Health professionals need a dose of drama in their training to build clinical and interpersonal skills.
You can’t resist the yawn. Chayanin Wongpracha/Shutterstock.com

What is it about yawning?

Everybody does it, but why? Scientists aren't really sure if exhaustion, stress or some other social factor is at the root of yawning – and how it can be so contagious.
Turns out some CEOs are genuinely out to make a difference. Craig Golding/AAP

Take heart, charity stunts can make CEOs better people

It's easy to be cynical about charity drives like the Vinnies CEO Sleepout. Are they just PR stunts or can they make a difference beyond fundraising? Our study shows they can, and they do.
Photos and history of Holocaust victims frame the ceiling of the Hall of Names at Yad Vashem, the Holocaust Museum in Jerusalem. White House photo by Chris Greenberg

Why we need to rethink how to teach the Holocaust

Foundational to the work of Holocaust educators and many teachers have been the survivors. Given there are fewer survivors who are alive today, how do educators inform future generations?
The development of an inclusive environment both at school and at home can help children understand and accept differences and reduce bullying. (Shutterstock)

The real way to prevent bullying: Create inclusive homes and classrooms

As Pink Shirt Day approaches, early childhood educators offer practical strategies for parents and teachers to create an inclusive environment and reduce bullying.
The 2014 film Ex Machina explored a dystopian vision of what could happen in a world where humans empathise with robots. Lionsgate Home Entertainment

How we decide who and what we care about – and whether robots stand a chance

When we include someone (or something) in our moral circle we feel a sense of moral obligation for their treatment. But the factors determining who is in or out are more complicated than you may think.

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