Empathy Imperiled by Gary Olson
Capitalism, Culture, and the Brain (SpringerBriefs in Political Science)

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The most
critical factor explaining the disjuncture between empathy’s revolutionary
potential and today’s empathically-impaired society is the interaction between
the brain and our dominant political culture. The evolutionary process has
given rise to a hard-wired neural system in the primal brain and particularly
in the human brain.  This book argues that the crucial missing piece in
this conversation is the failure to identify and explain the dynamic
relationship between an empathy gap and the hegemonic influence of neoliberal
capitalism, through the analysis of the college classroom, the neoliberal
state, media, film and photo images, marketing of products, militarization,
mass culture and government policy. This book will contribute to an empirically
grounded dissent from capitalism’s narrative about human nature.   Empathy
is putting oneself in another’s emotional and cognitive shoes and then acting
in a deliberate, appropriate manner.   Perhaps counter-intuitively, it
requires self-empathy because we’re all products of an empathy-anesthetizing
culture. The approach in this book affirms a scientific basis for acting with empathy,
and it addresses how this can help inform us to our current political culture
and process, and make its of interest to students and scholars in political
science, psychology, and other social sciences. ​

About Gary Olson

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Published December 12, 2012 by Springer. 121 pages
Genres: Health, Fitness & Dieting, Political & Social Sciences, Education & Reference, Professional & Technical, Law & Philosophy. Non-fiction