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Creative Writing Commons

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2016

Digital Humanities

An imals

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Full-Text Articles in Creative Writing

Empathy And Moral Laziness, Kathie Jenni Jan 2016

Empathy And Moral Laziness, Kathie Jenni

Animal Studies Journal

In The Empathy Exams Leslie Jamison offers an unusual perspective: ‘Empathy isn’t just something that happens to us – a meteor shower of synapses firing across the brain – it’s also a choice we make: to pay attention, to extend ourselves. It’s made of exertion, that dowdier cousin of impulse’ (23). This essay is dedicated to elaborating that crucial observation. A vast amount of recent research concerns empathy – in evolutionary biology, neurobiology, moral psychology, and ethics. I want to extend these investigations by exploring the degree to which individuals can control our empathy: for whom and what we feel ...