October 1, 2020
This week we read an interview from the author Paul Bloom, who wrote Against Empathy.
immediately, it struck me in the wrong place because I'm a very emotionally intelligent person and I feel others' feelings at a very deep level. I think he verbalized his research in a totally wrong way. His words didn't come off as understanding or apparoachable.
He makes some interesting points that I've never thought about- such as how he shares he doesn't feel empathy for people that don't share the same culture as him or their skin color. He speaks down on empathy, calling it biased as can be.
Bloom says, "I’m likely to feel empathy toward you, a handsome white guy, but somebody who is repulsive or frightening I don’t feel empathy for." I think this stametn is inhumane. A part of me considers that maybe I'm immediately repulsed because I recognize that a part of it might be true about myself toward biases that I might have. I'm willing to think about that for a moment and try to consider his statement, but also willing to dismiss that immediately because I would never say or believe such a thing. Maybe he uses his research in a subconscious way to make excuses for his biased thoughts.
Overall, I thought his argument wasn't very valid- there are important arguments to base your life off of. I think that most people wouldn't; give this book or his opinion the time of day because of how they perceive the word empathy with mostly good connotations.