Empathy Handbook


Curious about empathy?

Learn all about it

This handbook is a comprehensive introduction to the varieties of empathic phenomena written by an international group of empathy researchers. Thirty-three articles explain how different schools and disciplines view empathy, and recent empirical evidence. It covers the core issues, such as cognitive and affective empathy, empathy in the brain, the evolution of empathy, and empathy and phenomenology. It also provides insight into these broader topics: history of empathy, empathy and understanding, empathy and morals, empathy in art and aesthetics, and empathy and individual differences.

Contributions by: Dan Zahavi, Jeanette Kennett, Mark Davis, Jenefer Robinson, Karsten Stueber, Shaun Gallagher, Robyn Bluhm, Matthew Ratcliffe, David Shoemaker, Emily McRae, Noel Carroll, William Ickes, and many more.

Empathy and Morality


Must we empathize to be moral?

Read 11 different suggestions about the role of empathy in morality

What is the connection between empathy and morality? Do we need empathy to know right from wrong? Do we need it to be motivated to do what is right, or to prevent us from harming others? How does empathy develop? Are there disorders of empathy? Do animals have empathy? What does empathy look like in the brain? And do different cultures accord the same moral importance to empathy?

Contributions by: Daniel Batson; Tracy Spinrad and Nancy Eisenberg; Martin Hoffman; Antti Kauppinen; Richard Garrett and George Graham; Abigail Marsh; Giuseppe Ugazio, Jasminka Majdanzic, and Claus Lamm; Peter Hobson and Jessica Hobson; Kristin Andrews and Lori Gruen; Tony Ward and Russil Durrant; Douglas Hollan; and Heidi Maibom.




Are men’s and women’s brains different?

Feminists write on neuroscience

This collection is co-edited with Robyn Bluhm and Anne Jaap Jacobson. It brings together eleven papers examining issues at the intersection of neuroscience and feminism. For instance: does fetal testosterone make men’s brain different from women’s brains? What the relation between gender and sex in the brain? Do women have more empathic brains than men? Is there a female brain?

Contributions by: Giordana Grossi and Cordelia Fine, Rebecca Jordan-Young and Raffaella Ruminati, Ginger Hoffman, Letitia Meynell, Gillian Einstein, Isabelle Dussauge and Anelis Kaiser, Cynthia Kraus, Deboleena Roy, Anne Jaap Jacobson, Robyn Bluhm, and Heidi Maibom.



Knowing Me, Knowing You

Adventures in Perspective Taking and Empathy

Someone asks you to put yourself in her shoes. What do you do? Start by taking off your own? Well, no. Obviously the shoes are irrelevant. Her situation is what matters. So you imagine being in her situation. But how? Have you ever wondered what it is to take another’s point of view? Is ever truly possible, and if it is, what difference does it make? Written by philosopher and empathy expert, Heidi Maibom, Knowing Me, Knowing You takes you on a journey through philosophy, psychology, and neuroscience to show you the answers to these questions. You will learn when taking another person’s perspective is helpful, how to do it better, and what proven effects it has on understanding ourselves and others, and on getting along. In a country deeply divided by politics, learning to see what your neighbor sees may be essential to moving forward together as a nation.