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Old March 23, 2009, 03:52 PM   #84
Glenn E. Meyer
Join Date: November 17, 2000
Posts: 18,721
The Walter Mitty stuff is in part a giant discussion on the motivations for pro-social or altruistic behavior across the social sciences.

If you want a techy book on it:

Dovidio, J. F., Piliavin, J. A., Schroeder, D. A., & Penner, L., (2006). The social psychology of prosocial behavior. Mahwah, NJ, : Lawrence Erlbaum Associates Publishers.

Also, views of aggression are useful. It is an interesting perspective to see altruism as an outcome of such processes as compared to some philosophical /theological view of the universe and humanity. The latter is sometimes immune to empirical evidence in debate.

Such an academic. Sigh.
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