Focusing on the self to humanize others: the role of empathy and morality

Andrea Scatolon, Keren Sharvit, Carmen Huici, Alba Alamo Hernandez, Gilat Glazer, Elena Lorenzo Sánchez, Melanie Michna

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Literature on dehumanization has mainly focused on factors that might reduce dehumanization and increase humanization of others. In this article, we claim that, rather than changing the way others are perceived, research on the topic should consider focusing on the human qualities of the self or ingroup, which could in turn facilitate people's humanization of others. The main focus of this approach is exemplified by morality and empathy, as they represent uniquely human characteristics needed for human survival. Several lines of research consistent with this notion are reviewed, highlighting how the relationship between self or ingroup focus, morality/empathy, and reduced dehumanization is relatively understudied. We conclude by suggesting that future research should address these issues, thus expanding the understanding of the factors leading to humanization — and ultimately improving relations between groups and individuals.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number101264
JournalCurrent Opinion in Behavioral Sciences
StatePublished - Jun 2023

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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