Models of prosociality towards strangers have been rooted in the inhibition of self-interest for centuries, with a plethora of contemporary experimental work continuing to observe self-inhibiton as central to the production of prosocial behaviour towards strangers. Yet, our research suggests that prosocial behaviour towards strangers is critically dependent on the upregulation of the other more so than inhibition of the self. This mechanism of other-upregulation held explanatory power beyond prosociality to include the production of antisocial behaviour as well, suggesting this mechanism may support the translation of both prosocial and antisocial motivation into behaviour. Avenues of upcoming exploration include whether such a mechanism provides explanatory power within intergroup contexts.
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