Center for Building a Culture of Empathy

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Culture of Empathy Builder:  Connor Wood


Edwin Rutsch & Connor Wood: Dialogs on Building a Culture of Empathy 

 

2011-12-30 - Animals and empathy
"Some research has suggested that some animals, including mice, may be able to experience “emotional contagion,” or the basic mirroring of another individual’s painful or pleasurable experiences. Mice may lick their own paws after seeing compatriots’ paws pricked by researchers’ needles, for example. But emotional contagion isn’t the same thing as empathy – it’s more a kind of a precursor or steppingstone to it. And until this December, no research had been published showing that animals such as mice or rats were capable of correctly understanding and reacting to the experiences of others, a common definition of true empathy."