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Our studies suggest that more positive attitudes toward greed and the pursuit of self-interest among upper-class individuals, in part, drive their tendencies toward increased unethical behavior,” said lead researcher Paul Piff of UC Berkeley.
The research revealed that relative to the lower class, upper-class individuals are more likely to break the law while driving, more likely to exhibit unethical decision-making tendencies, more likely to take valued goods from others, more likely to lie in a negotiation, more likely to cheat to increase their chances of winning a prize and more likely to endorse unethical behavior at work.
“The relative privilege and security enjoyed by upper-class individuals give rise to independence from others and a prioritization of the self and one’s own welfare over the welfare of others–what we call ‘greed,’” explained Piff, whose research was funded in part by a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship.
“This is likely to cause someone to be more inclined to break the rules in his or her favor, or to perceive themselves as, in a sense, being ‘above the law,’” he said and therefore become more prone to committing unethical behavior. -Science Daily
Writing Prompt: Write a story, scene or poem about entitlement in an upper class protagonist.
Journaling Prompt: Write about a time when you were affected by someone who felt entitled.
Art Prompt: Greed
Nonfiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Write about the problem of entitlement in today’s culture.
Photo Credit: erix! on Flickr
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