Chapter

Empathy Is Not Always as Personal as You May Think: The Use of Stereotypes in Empathic Accuracy

Karyn L. Lewis and Sara D. Hodges

in Empathy

Published by The MIT Press

Published in print December 2011 | ISBN: 9780262016612
Published online August 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780262298612 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.7551/mitpress/9780262016612.003.0005
Empathy Is Not Always as Personal as You May Think: The Use of Stereotypes in Empathic Accuracy

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This chapter, which defines empathic accuracy and the process that helps in achieving it, presents two forms of empathy, including bottom-up and top-down, along with the different skill sets on which these two forms are based. Researchers have suggested that imagination plays an important role in the above forms of empathy. The chapter presents studies according to which intimacy and acquaintanceship increase empathic accuracy following the expansion of a perceiver’s target-schema. It discusses the role of stereotypes in bettering the accuracy of social perceptions that help in facilitating emotions such as understanding and empathy, and also explores the reliance of men and women on stereotypes to understand the thoughts of other people in a group.

Keywords: empathic accuracy; empathy; imagination; intimacy; acquaintanceship; social perceptions

Chapter.  5088 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Neuropsychology

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