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Why do people help strangers when disaster strikes?

Why do people help strangers when disaster strikes?

Marc Fucarile, a 34-year old native of Stoneham MA, lost his right leg, nearly lost his left, was peppered with shrapnel, and suffered severe burns when the second bomb exploded at the 2013 Boston Marathon.  Shortly thereafter, from his hospital bed, Marc described his situation saying, “There’s more good in the world than there is bad” (LaPierre, 2013).  Given his circumstances, this is an extraordinary observation, one that inspires awe and admiration.  His perspective tells... / more

Altruism: Myth or Reality?

Altruism: Myth or Reality?

We humans devote much time and energy to helping others. We send money to famine victims halfway around the world—or to save whales. We stay up all night to comfort a friend with a broken relationship. We stop on a busy highway to help a stranded motorist change a flat tire. Why do we do these things? What is our motive? The dominant answer in Western thought is well expressed by the wise and witty Duke de la Rouchefoucauld, 2001: “The... / more

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