Young children's theories of mind about empathetic and selfish motives

Main Article Content

Harvey J. Ginsburg
Shirley M. Ogletree
Tammy D. Silakowski
Roger D. Bartels
Shannon L. Burk
G. Marc Turner
Cite this article:  Ginsburg, H., Ogletree, S., Silakowski, T., Bartels, R., Burk, S., & Turner, G. (2003). Young children's theories of mind about empathetic and selfish motives. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 31(3), 237-244.


Abstract
Full Text
References
Tables and Figures
Acknowledgments
Author Contact

Young children's prosocial behaviors may be motivated by empathy. Forty-one 36-66 month-old children were actively involved with a pipe cleaner figurine play scenario. One figurine appeared distressed at an alarm sound. The other figurines simultaneously terminated the alarm, expressing either empathic or selfish motives. Twenty-four participants (58.5%) correctly pointed at the empathic and selfish figurines, and correctly restated their motives. Of these, 50% (12) consistently predicted empathic or selfish figurines' motives and actions in 3 other situations. Linear regression analyses indicated children's theories of mind about others' selfish and empathic motives predicted preferences for snack sharing with the empathic figurine (R2 = .690, p < .001) and empathically helping a friend in distress (R2 = .702, p < .001).
Please login and/or purchase the PDF to view the full article.
Please login and/or purchase the PDF to view the full article.
Please login and/or purchase the PDF to view the full article.
Please login and/or purchase the PDF to view the full article.
Please login and/or purchase the PDF to view the full article.

Article Details