Whatever Happened to Empathy?: Introduction

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Abstract

Abstract In this special issue, we examine the problem of empathy in anthropological theorizing and practice. Noting the relative lack of explicit interest in or systematic exploration of empathy in anthropology, we explore some of the issues related to defining, recognizing, and enacting empathic-like processes in cultural context. We also highlight similarities and differences in the way contributors examine empathy, and based on this comparative perspective, we raise a number of questions for further research and discussion. We conclude by noting some of the issues not addressed by this small collection of articles and by suggesting why anthropologists in particular have so much to contribute to the study of empathy. [empathy, intentionality, theory of mind, intersubjectivity]

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