Tears trigger helping behaviour
People are usually more willing to help those who cry. The question is why and what kind of help tears activate. The EU-funded TEARAID project will try to solve this question. It will examine the effects of tears on the promotion of two types of prosocial behaviour: autonomy- and dependency-oriented help. It will also test the role of underlying mechanisms like perceived humanness of the tearful person and self-transcendent emotions felt in response to tears, such as compassion. Photos and videos of refugees used in news stories and social campaigns by NGOs will be used to compare people’s reactions to tearful and non-tearful refugees. The findings will assist in improving measures of prosocial behaviour and creating joint initiatives with the crowdfunding industry.
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