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Titel: Prosocial Commitments in the Family: Situational, Personality, and Systemic Factors
Autor(en): Montada, Leo
Erscheinungsdatum: 1991
Zusammenfassung: People spend most of their time in social systems: in families, with friends, in educational and work settings, in clubs, and so forth. Therefore, most of their behaviors, including prosocial activities, occur in social contexts that differ with regard to speciic traditions, expectations, norms, possibilities, resources, problems, and restrictions. Research on helping behavior in long-term social relationships is scarce. Even though the evidence from experimental research is impressive (Bierhoff, 1990; Staub, 1980), many questions remain open. The research reported in the present chapter focused on two of these questions: (1) Little is known about whether the variables affecting prosocial behavior in experimental settings are equally important in long-term social systems. For instance, does the phenomenon of diffusing among bystanders the responsibility for helping an anonymous victim hold in situations in which the person in need and the potential helpers know each other well? It is quite possible that the meaning and the significance of experimental factors change if the interacting individuals are friends or kin. (2) Experimental research on help toward a stranger does not tell us whether or not additional variables are important factors in help among members of a social group. Various characteristics of a social system and its individuals may affect the likelihood of help being provided in case of needs, for example, formal and informal norms, the quality of the relationship among the members of a system, mutual expectations, the status of the individuals involved, and so forth. Variables of this kind can hardly be manipulated in experimental studies.
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