Human Relationships Social Responsibility
Our Roles as Humans within Society • In 1978 Staubdefined pro-social behavior as behavior that benefits another person or has positive social consequences. • Considered vague because it doesn’t discuss the motivation of the behavior, just the outcome. • Helping behavior just what it sounds like! (Behavior that intentionally helps/benefits another person) • “Making a difference” • CAS hours • Altruism is when one helps another with no reward and at some cost to oneself • Risking one’s life so save another in a car accident
Psychological Research on Altruism Biological Psychological (Cognitive) • Evolutionary psychology • Kin Selection Theory • “The selfish gene theory” • Reciprocal Altruism Theory • Prisoner’s Dilemma • Based off of cognitive psychology • Negative-State Relief Model • Empathy-Altruism Model • Personal distress vs. empathetic concern
Kin Selection Theory • The closer the relationship between the helper and those being helped the more likely altruistic behavior will be displayed • Dawkins (1976): “The Selfish Gene Theory” • Innate drive that our genes compete; organisms try to maximize its “inclusive fitness” (number of genes copied globally, not individually) • Difficult to test under controlled conditions, does not explain why humans help complete strangers
Reciprocal Altruism Theory(“You scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours”) • An animal may benefit from behaving altruistically if there is expectation that the favor will be returned in the future • Used to explain the evolution of altruism among non related individuals • Trivers (1971): Through mutual cooperation both will increase their chance of survival. • Smaller fish cleaning a larger fish gills and mouth
Prisoner’s Dilemma • Axelrod & Hamilton (1981): Used a version of the prisoner’s dilemma to test reciprocal altruism with humans • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IotsMu1J8fA • Cooperate or defect • If both cooperate, both receive a reward • If both defect, neither receive a reward • If players meet each other many times, they will adjust their strategy to fit opponent’s last move • “tit-for-tat”
How the Prisoner’s dilemma explains altruism • Axelrod & Hamilton believe that cooperation to this extent is an evolutionarily stable strategy. • Shows how actions determined by self-interest are not always in the group’s interest. • Thomas Hobbs: Social Contract Theory: • “…uncontrolled pursuit of self-interest would result in chaos and that governments have the responsibility of preventing this chaos.”
Evaluation of the Reciprocal Altruism Theory • Can we use animal behavior to justify human behavior? • Human behavior is influence more conscious beliefs and desires as well as by culture than that of animals. • Generally, humans behave more altruistically towards close kin than non-relatives and we also like to repay the favor of people helping us. • Adoption however cannot be explained by the biological model since it does not benefit the kin.
Psychological Explanation of Altruism • Lerner & Lichtman (1968): Working in pairs, one individual was the learner (receive electrical shocks) and the other was the control. • One person per group was the confederate (in on the experiment) and that person was always “randomly” assigned the role of the “learner. • When the confederate (learner) acted distressed the other person offered to switch roles, thus illustrating altruistic behavior.
Negative-State Relief • Schaller & Cialdini (1988): As humans, we often don’t like to see others in discomfort/distress. • Egoistic motives cause us to help others in negative circumstances in order to reduce the distress WEexperience from watching THEM. • This also justifies why we walk away from situations rather than helping because it helps reduce distress.
EMPATHY-ALTRUISM MODEL: Batson et al. (1981) Personal Distress Empathetic Concern • Anxiety & fear • Leads to egoistic helping • Sympathy, compassion, tenderness • Leads to altruistic behavior When you feel empathy towards someone you will help him/her regardless of any pay back. Relieving individuals from suffering is the biggest concern. When no empathy is felt, cost vs. benefit rules your decision to help.
Findings of Batson’s Study • This study has been replicated multiple times with similar results thus supporting the idea that helping behavior based on empathy is unselfish. • Weaknesses: • This study only looks at short-term altruism • Also, personality factors have not been taken into consideration • Doesn’t measure the level of one’s empathy • Although Batson argues that empathy is innate trait it is undetermined why we do not experience predictable levels of empathy in a given situation. • Is one’s level of empathy learned or is there a biological connection?
Kitty Genovese Case March 13, 1964 Along a serene, tree-lined street in the Kew Gardens section of Queens, New York City, Catherine Genovese began the last walk of her life in the early morning hours of March 13, 1964. She had just left work, and it was 3:15 a.m. when she parked her red Fiat in the Long Island Railroad parking lot 20 feet from her apartment door. As she locked her car door, she took notice of a figure in the darkness walking quickly toward her. She became immediately concerned as soon as the stranger began to follow her. “As she got out of the car she saw me and ran,” the man told the court later, “I ran after her and I had a knife in my hand.” She must have thought that since the entrance to her building was so close, she would reach safety within seconds. But the man was faster than she thought. The man caught up with Catherine, who was all of 5'1” and weighed just 105 pounds, near a street light at the end of the parking lot.
“I could run much faster than she could, and I jumped on her back and stabbed her several times,” the man later told cops. “Oh my God! He stabbed me!” she screamed. “Please help me! Please help me!” Some apartment lights went on in nearby buildings. Irene Frost heard Catherine’s screams plainly. “There was another shriek,” she later testified in court, “and she was lying down crying out.” Up on the seventh floor of the same building, Robert Mozer slid open his window and observed the struggle below. “Hey, let that girl alone!” he yelled down into the street. The attacker heard Mozer and immediately walked away. There was quiet once again in the dark. The only sound was the sobbing of the victim, struggling to her feet. The lights in the apartment went out again. Catherine, bleeding badly from several stab wounds, managed to reach the side of her building and held onto the concrete wall. She staggered over to a locked door and tried to stay conscious. Within five minutes, the assailant returned. He stabbed her again. “I’m dying! I’m dying!” she cried to no one.
But several people in her building heard her screams. Lights went on once again and some windows opened. Tenants tried to see what was happening from the safety of their apartments. The attacker then ran to a white Chevy Corvair at the edge of the railroad parking lot and seemed to drive away. On the sixth floor Marjorie and Samuel Koshkin witnessed the attack from their window. “I saw a man hurry to a car under my window,” he said later. “He left and came back five minutes later and was looking around the area.” Mr. Koshkin wanted to call the police, but Mrs. Koshkin thought otherwise. “I didn't let him,” she later said to the press. “I told him there must have been 30 calls already.” Miss Andre Picq, who lived on the second floor, heard the commotion from her window. “I heard a scream for help, three times,“ she later told the court, “I saw a girl lying down on the pavement with a man bending down over her, beating her.”
About 3:25 a.m., Catherine, bleeding badly, stumbled to the rear of her apartment building and attempted to enter through a back entrance. The door was locked. She slid along the wall until she reached a hallway leading to the 2nd floor of 82-62 Austin Street but she fell to the vestibule floor. In the meantime, the man had returned again. “I came back because I knew I’d not finished what I set out to do,” he told cops later. He walked along the row of doors and calmly searched for the woman. He checked the first door and didn’t find her. He followed the trail of blood to the doorway where Catherine lay bleeding on the tiled floor. And there, while the defenseless victim lay semiconscious, incoherent from pain and loss of blood, he cut off her bra and underwear and sexually assaulted her. He then took $49 in cash from her wallet. “Why would I throw money away?” he asked the court at his trial. As Catherine moaned at his feet, probably unable to comprehend what had happened to her, the man viciously stabbed her again and killed her. The man, who had selected his victim purely at random, ran to his car still parked where he left it. The entire event lasted at least 32 minutes.
He said later that murder “was an idea that came into my mind, just as an idea might come into your mind, but I couldn't put mine aside.” Catherine was his third murder. At about 3:50 a.m., a neighbor, Karl Ross, who lived on the second floor of Catherine’s building on Austin Street, finally called the police. But before he did, he called a friend in nearby Nassau County and asked his opinion about what he should do. After the police were notified, a squad car arrived within three minutes and quickly found Catherine’s body in the hallway on the first floor. She had been stabbed 17 times. Her torn and cut clothes were scattered about and her open wallet lay on the floor next to her. Her driver’s license identified her as Catherine Genovese. Detectives from the 112 responded and began an exhaustive investigation. A canvass of the neighborhood turned up several witnesses, including the one who had notified the police. When cops finished polling the immediate neighborhood, they discovered at least 38 people who had heard or observed some part of the fatal assault on Kitty Genovese.
What would you have done? Have you ever been a bystander? What causes some people to stop to help others and some choose not to help?
Bystander effect • Latane’ & Darley began research after the Kitty Genovese murder (1964) to understand why some people do not help others…thus bystanderism was coined (The presence of others seems to determine whether or not others will intervene.) • 2 factors cause individuals to either help or not: • 1.) Diffusion of Responsibility • 2.) Pluralistic Ignorance
Bystanderism Diffusion of Responsibility Pluralistic Ignorance • People reason that somebody else can/should/will offer assistance. • Latane’ & Darley (1968): • Interviews and a “choking” victim: • 4+ participants:31% helped • One other person 65% helped • Only person there 85% helped • If there is an emergency and someone sees others not reacting, they will not either. • Look to others to know how to react (information social influence.) • Latane’ & Darley (1969): • Sitting in a waiting room and hears a women fall and cry out • Alone, reacted more often and quickly • In a room with a confederate (in on experiment) who didn’t react then they were less likely to react/help.
Post-experiment interview of the Latane’ & Darley 1969 study • Participants reveled that they felt anxious when thy heard the person fall but since others appeared calm they assumed there was no emergency. • In real life there is ambiguity about situations and it is hard to interpret what is going and if there are real emergencies. • Also, people are less likely to help in situations when they believe there is a relationship between the people (Domestic violence cases)
Social Exchange Theory • Human relationships are based on a subjective cost-benefit analysis • When benefits (financial reward, esteem, affection, avoidance of failure) outweigh the potential costs (humiliation, pain, financial loss) we are more likely to help
Arousal-cost-reward Model • Piliavan et al. (1969, 1981): Looked a both emergency and nonemergency situations • Considers an interaction of mood and cognition in determining behavior and arousal is the emotional response to the need or distress of others. • Bystanders are motivated to reduce arousal thus it is considered a motivational factor. • Agrees with the negative-state relief model • The cost-reward factor should be seen in terms of assessing possible costs and rewards associated with helping or not helping.
Piliavin et al. (1969) • Observing an emergency situation always creates emotional arousal in bystanders. • Arousal can be increased by several factors including empathy with the victim, proximity to the emergency, and the length of time that the emergency lasts. • Depending on the situation, arousal can perceived in many ways such as fear, disgust, or sympathy. • Ways arousal can be reduced: • Helping • Seeking help from others • Leaving the scene • Deciding that the person does not need/deserve help
Cost-reward analysis • Cost of helping: Effort, embarrassment, possible physical harm • Cost of not helping: Self-blame & perceived censure from others • Rewards of helping: praise from onlookers & the victim • Rewards of not helping: getting on with personal business & not incurring the possible costs of helping
The Role of Social norms in pro-social behavior Heroic Helpers Religion • Oliner & Oliner (1988): Civil Rights workers during segregation in the 1960s or Christians that sheltered Jews during WWII identified with parents that showed concern for others • Calosanto (1989): Those that are committed religiously were more likely to give time & money compared to non committed religious individuals.
Family Affair= Negative example of Pro-Social Behavior • Shotland & Straw (1976): • Staged attack of a man and woman • “I don’t know you!”= 65% prevented the “stranger’s” assault • “I don’t know why I ever married you!”= 19% helped because that thought it was a marital dispute
Can Social Norms Change Bystanderism? Beaman (1978): Staub (1983): • 2 groups, one watched a film about helping, the other did not. • 2 weeks later each student from both groups were observed in a mock accident. • Those that watched the film= 43% helped • Did not watch film= 25% helped • Asked young children to do one of the three tasks • 1.) Write a letter to other children in a hospital • 2.) Tutor a younger child • 3.) Make toys for chronically ill children • More likely to help in situations where the helped was desired rather than in situations where the children had engaged in similar activities (making toys for themselves or studying with a friend)
What do these Studies Prove? • Social norms play important roles in pro-social behavior • Social norms that one should not intervene in another’s personal life is perhaps stronger than the idea of helping someone • Domestic violence cases >
Is Pro-Social Behavior common cross-culturally? Whiting (1979) Graves & Graves (1985) • Nurturing and helping behavior of children ages 3-11 in 6 countries • Kenya, Mexico, and Pilipino scored high • United States scored the lowest • Pro-social behavior correlates with children’s involvement in the responsibilities of family life • Helping is least likely in societies were completing school is held higher than being assigned to help with farming and household chores • Taking on the role of a caregiver at a young age provides children with the opportunity to learn how to behave in a pro-social manner. • Pro-social behavior can be learned in environments that models and has social norms that expect all members of the family to contribute for the common good
Social Identity Theory • The desire to provide help for those that we perceive to be similar to us (members of our in-group) • Katz (1981): People are more likely to help those in their own ethnic group that others that are not • Bond & Leung (1988): Chinese and Japanese helped more than US to those whom they perceived to be from an in-group, however, they were less likely than Americans to help others from an out-group • More extensive research needs to be conducted to confirm that this difference is unique
Human Relationships INTERPERSONAL RELATIONSHIPS
What is a relationship? Involving strong and frequent interdependence (thoughts, emotions and behaviors that influence others) in many domains of life • The condition or fact of being related; connection or association. • Connection by blood or marriage; kinship. • A particular type of connection existing between people related to or having dealings with each other. (siblings, classmates, peer groups) • A romantic or sexual involvement.
Is a relationship a NEED or a WANT? • According to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, relationships are necessary to have a fulfilled life.
Relationships not only help our emotional well-being, but our health is impacted as well • Married people report being happier and healthier than those who are single (Steinhauser 1995) • Compared to those in troubled marriages, those that are happily married have immune systems that ward off infections more effectively (Kiecolt 1987) • Steven Cole (2007) found that chronic loneliness increased gene activity linked to inflammation, and reduced gene activity associated with antibody production and antiviral responses.
What impacts Attraction • Proximity: Geographic nearness • Greater availability to meet, familiarity • MERE EXPOSURE EFFECT: The phenomenon that repeated exposure to novel stimuli increase liking of them. • Studies have shown that we are more attracted to things/people that have seen more than once.
What impacts Attraction • Physical attractiveness: APPEARANCE plays a major role…unfortunately as humans we are superficial! • Predicts frequency of dating, feelings of popularity, and initial impressions of their personality. • Attractive people are PERCIEVED to be healthier, happier, more sensitive, more successful, and more socially skilled, however not more honest or compassionate. (Eagly & others, 1991)
What impacts Attraction • Similarity: Humans tend to have healthier relationships with those that are similar (have similar interests, personalities, etc.) • Friends and couples are far more likely to share common attitudes, beliefs and interests. (Rosenbaum, 1986) • In “real life” opposites retract NOT attract.
What purpose does attraction serve? • Evolutionary theories argue that the purpose of attraction is for procreation (biological level of analysis) • The extent to which one perceives another person to be similar to themselves then the likelihood of that person finding that person attractive is higher. (cognitive level of analysis) • People that tend to live closer to each other tend to have the same social and cultural norms and they also tend to share the same ways of contacting and interacting with one another. (sociocultural level of analysis)
Love…what is it and does it have a purpose? • A deep, tender, ineffable feeling of affection and solicitude toward a person, such as that arising from kinship, recognition of attractive qualities, or a sense of underlying oneness. • A feeling of intense desire and attraction toward a person with whom one is disposed to make a pair; the emotion of sex and romance. • A person who is the object of deep or intense affection or attraction; beloved. Often used as a term of endearment
Passionate love vs. Companionate love(Berscheid and Hatfield, 1972) Passionate Love Companionate Love • Complete absorption in another that includes sexual feelings and intense emotion. • Gradually replaced by companionate love. • Women tend to be more statisfied with their marriage when they feel sparks of passionate love, males are not affected (Aron and Hankemyer, 1995) • Warm, trusting, tolerant affection for another whose life is deeply intertwined with one’s own life.
Triangular Theory of Love(Robert Sternberg, 1988) Passion, intimacy, and commitment work together
Origins of Attraction: Biological LoA • Obsession: Not being able to turn off their thoughts about the one they love/admire. • Biochemical “cocktail” of a human’s romantic passion can be blamed on a combination of dopamine, serotonin, and adrenaline. • Romantic love is NOT an emotion but rather a motivation system (need or craving) that our brain has been hardwired due to years of evolution in order to mate. (Fischer)
Serotonin…how does it impact love? • Helps focus on the one you love • In 1999, Marazitti et al. conducted a study that looked at the serotonin level of 20 people that have fallen in love within the past 6 months and 20 people with untreated OCD, and 20 normal individuals who were not in love (control group) and compared their serotonin level in blood samples… • RESULTS: The low serotonin levels in the blood of those fallen in love in 6 months and those with OCD were equivalent.
So what? It’s the brain that matters! • In 2004, Fischer argued that until research on serotonin levels are measured in specific parts of the brain then there is not any proof that serotonin impacts romantic love.
Adrenaline...heart is racing! • Stress hormone • Fischer (2004) argues that when you are around that “special someone” and you have an increased level in adrenaline it can contribute to those “butterflies in your stomach” feelings of… • Sweaty palms • Heart racing • Mouth going dry • High energy • Less need for sleep and food • And focused attention on that “loved one”
“A beautiful picture of the brain in love” • In 2003, Fischer investigated the blood flow in the brain by using fMRI brain scans of people in love. • 20 people were shown a picture of their beloved for 30 seconds and then their brain was scanned. • They were then given a distracting task followed by viewing another photo of a neutral person, once again their brain was scanned. • Each part repeated 6 times. • RESULTS: The blood flow in the brain’s reward system (activated by a pleasant stimulus) during the beloved picture was more intense than during the neutral pictures. • http://www.ted.com/talks/helen_fisher_studies_the_brain_in_love.html
Role of hormones in Bonding • Moving from passionate love to intimate love…attachment is formed. • Feelings of comfort, security, and relatedness • In 1969, Bowlby argued that our ability to create attachments is an innate quality; specific behaviors and physiological responses are attachment behaviors. • Hormones involved in attachment: 1.) Oxytocin 2.) Vasopressin
Oxytocin • VERY powerful Hormone released during sex and touching; helps deepen and intensify feelings of attachment. • It is also released during childbirth, thus forming close attachments with the mother and infant. • Lab rats that had their oxytocin blocked/inhibited rejected their young and did not demonstrate nurturing behaviors.
VASOPRESSIN • Another sex released hormone that is important for long-term commitment. • In a study that increased the level of vasopressin in prairie voles, these animals formed stronger bonds and had more sex (other than for reproduction) just like humans. • When vasopressin was inhibited, the males lost devotion to their mate and did not protect them from potential mates. • Evidence that vasopressin plays an important role in attachment and mating behavior.