Experiencing Trauma Encourages Altruism

Haylie D’Ann Hills

Abstract


Altruism is very important because it can establish stronger communication between individuals, which can then produce stronger relationships with others. Previous research on altruism has found that individuals who have experienced more trauma participate in more helping behaviors (behaviors that bring help to those in need, such as, holding the door open for someone or volunteering at a soup kitchen). Other studies have found that there was not a significant relationship between viewing natural disaster footage and helping people. The objective of this research study was to determine if watching a video of the trauma a natural disaster caused would cause altruism in the viewers. In order to test this hypothesis, we used an experimental group, a control group and an independent and dependent variable. The scores on the dependent variable were compared between the experimental and control groups, and we found no significant difference in between the two groups.


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