Humans favor others seen as similar to themselves (ingroup) over people seen as different (outgroup), even without explicitly stated bias. Ingroup-outgroup bias extends to involuntary responses, such as empathy for pain. However, empathy biases have not been tested in our close primate relatives. Contagious yawning has been theoretically and empirically linked to empathy. If empathy underlies contagious yawning, we predict that subjects should show an ingroup-outgroup bias by yawning more in response to watching ingroup members yawn than outgroup. Twenty-three chimpanzees (
Publisher: Public Library of Science
Date Published: 6-April-2011
Author(s): Campbell M., de Waal F.