Wednesday, August 11, 2010
A Failure of Empathy
The notion that it is human empathy that allows us to live together is tested in these two stories. The failure of this empathy has been demonstrated all too often in history; from the many holocausts and genocides to the meaning of acts in war, as in the case of Hiroshima. As a psychologist, one reads many articles about the importance of empathy in psychotherapy, but many fewer works on re-building empathy across societies so that people different from ourselves are not just regarded as “the other.” It sets a challenging, but important goal for those us who work in human services.