Monika Dullstein
Universität Heidelberg
The notion of empathy has been explicated in different ways in the current debate on how to understand others. Whereas defenders of simulation-based approaches claim that empathy involves some kind of isomorphism between the empathizer’s and the target’s mental state, defenders of the phenomenological account vehemently deny this and claim that empathy allows us to directly perceive someone else’s mental states. Although these views are typically presented as being opposed, I argue that at least one version of a simulation-based approach—the account given by de Vignemont and Jacob—is compatible with the direct-perception view. My argument has two parts: My first step is to show that the conflict between these accounts is not—as it seems at first glance—a disagreement on the mechanism by which empathy comes about. Rather, it is due to the fact that their proponents attribute two very different roles to empathy in understanding others. My second step is to introduce Stein’s account of empathy. By not restricting empathy to either one of these two roles, her process model of empathy helps to see how the divergent intuitions that have been brought forward in the current debate could be integrated.
Keywords empathy  simulation  direct perception
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/s13164-013-0139-2
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

 PhilArchive page | Other versions
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Simulating Minds: The Philosophy, Psychology, and Neuroscience of Mindreading.Amy Coplan - 2008 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 66 (1):94-97.
Empathy and Direct Social Perception: A Phenomenological Proposal. [REVIEW]Dan Zahavi - 2011 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 2 (3):541-558.

View all 17 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

The Phenomenology of Empathy: A Steinian Emotional Account.Fredrik Svenaeus - 2016 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 15 (2):227-245.
Edith Stein’s Phenomenology of Sensual and Emotional Empathy.Fredrik Svenaeus - 2018 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 17 (4):741-760.

View all 11 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Empathy and Analogy.Allison Barnes & Paul Thagard - 1997 - Dialogue 36 (4):705-720.
Basic Empathy and Complex Empathy.Dan Zahavi - 2012 - Emotion Review 4 (1):81-82.
The Direct-Perception Model of Empathy: A Critique. [REVIEW]Pierre Jacob - 2011 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 2 (3):519-540.
Empathy, Embodiment and Interpersonal Understanding: From Lipps to Schutz.Dan Zahavi - 2010 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 53 (3):285-306.
Similarity Versus Familiarity: When Empathy Becomes Selfish.Elias L. Khalil - 2001 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 25 (1):41-41.
Simulation, Projection and Empathy.Dan Zahavi - 2008 - Consciousness and Cognition 17 (2):514-522.
The Presence of Others.Heidi Lene Maibom - 2007 - Philosophical Studies 132 (2):161-190.
Psychobiological Basis of Empathy.Jay Schulkin - 2001 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 25 (1):46-47.
Empathy and Otherness.Kathleen Haney - 2009 - Journal of Philosophy: A Cross-Disciplinary Inquiry 4 (8):11-19.
A Three-Person Model of Empathy.Fritz Breithaupt - 2012 - Emotion Review 4 (1):84-91.


Added to PP index

Total views
616 ( #11,836 of 2,461,941 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
8 ( #88,036 of 2,461,941 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes