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We are a worldwide social network of freethinkers, atheists, agnostics and secular humanists.


To be honest, I think this thread would fit in Atheist Morality or The Naked Ape just as easily as it does here.

 

We've often come across these stories, as well as analysis of the similarities between animals and humans when it comes to empathy and reciprocity (especially in evolutionary terms, and especially in dealing with primates), but I personally never get tired of reading them.

 

This thread will be the place to post these important stories and publications if you decide not to create a dedicated thread to them. Topics should include cooperation, reciprocity, empathy, inequality aversion, etc. If you don't have anything to add now, please select FOLLOW anyhow so that you can be notified of new additions.

 

I will start with these:

Bonobo Handshake: What Makes Our Chimp-Like Cousins So Cooperative?

'Peter Pan' Apes Never Seem to Learn Selfishness

Buddy, Can You Spare a Banana?  

Some Males React to Competition Like Bonobos, Others Like Chimpanzees

Social Tolerance Allows Bonobos To Outperform Chimpanzees On A Coop...

 

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This may need its own post. You be the judge, DG

 

Contagious Chimp Yawns Seem to Point to Human-Like Empathy

 

Contagious Chimp Yawns Seem to Point to Human-Like Empathy

What’s the News: Chimpanzees, like people, can “catch” yawns from others. But not all yawns are created equal, it seems; chimps are more likely to catch yawns from a chimp they know than from a stranger, a new study found. (You can see a video of it here.) This supports the idea that it’s empathy—rather than just everybody needing a nap—that makes yawns contagious.

 How the Heck:

  • Two groups of chimps at the Yerkes National Primate Research Center near Atlanta, each with about a dozen adult members, were part of the study. The two groups lived in different large enclosures, and hadn’t seen—much less gotten to know—each other. Chimpanzees are extremely territorial, and a whole lot friendlier to individuals in their own group than to strangers.
  • The researchers took videos of spontaneous yawns from chimps in each group, as well as videos of the chimps just hanging out in the enclosure. They then played each chimp two videos on an iPod Touch: a yawn video, which included clips of chimps from both groups yawning,  and a control video, of chimps doing other things.
  • The chimpanzees yawned more when they saw their group members yawning than when they saw them going about their usual business, the study found, and they yawned more in response to their groupmates’ yawning than to the yawns of chimps in the other group.

What’s the Context:

Reference: Matthew W. Campbell, & Frans B. M. de Waal. “Ingroup-Outgroup Bias in Contagious Yawning by Chimpanzees Supports Link to Empathy.” PLoS ONE, 6 (4), 2011. DOI :10.1371/journal.pone.0018283

I want to yawn right now just reading about it, but I've always been very empathetic. : )

 

Either way, just whatever you think. Leave it here for now though, but in the future, whatever you think is best.

 

Interesting stuff. I suppose they've found mirror neurons in primates as well, right?

Published on Jul 31, 2012

Bella and Beavis played ball together, shared living quarters, ate together, etc. They lived and loved together for quite a while. Beavis died this morning, and Bella has been in mourning for hours.

If you do a Google Images search for "cross-species friends"...


Yeah, I know, it's not very scientific, but you'll still find tons of anecdotal evidence that we are not the exclusive owners of empathy.

It would appear in my opinion that they show more empathy than humans toward each other...

Certainly seems that way, at time. 

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