Nature Versus Nurture: The Biology and Psychology of Empathy

  • Helen Demetriou


This chapter focuses on the nature versus nurture debate surrounding empathy and its biological and psychological influences. The role of neuroscience, the brain and genetics are described, and followed by the counterargument of the socialising effect of attachments and their influence on social, emotional and cognitive functioning, leading to research that emphasises the transference of empathy from the sensitive caregiver to the sensitive child and the power of the attachment process for the development of empathy.


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© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Helen Demetriou
    • 1
  1. 1.Faculty of EducationUniversity of CambridgeCambridgeUK

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