The Caring Motivation

Caring is all around us and is manifested in diverse settings such as parenting, friendships, volunteering, altruism, mentoring, teaching, pet adoption, and gardening. The study of caring, the giving end of our relations, has been dispersed among a large variety of research paradigms (e.g., evolution, brain research, attachment theory, feminism, altruism, volunteering, parenting, social support, prosocial development, organizational citizenship behavior and sustainability) and this has impeded our understanding of caring.

The Caring Motivation is a pioneering attempt to bring the diverse research on caring together and to examine caring as a motivation from a broad perspective that relies on these very diverse literatures.

The book:

• Presents a conceptual model of the caring motivation that describes how caring is psychologically activated
• Highlights and provides strong evidence to maintain that human nature is innately caring, as opposed to mostly selfish, and that such caring is central in our lives
• Demonstrates that caring involves a variety of manifestations with diverse targets (close and unfamiliar others, pets, gardens), all ensuing from the same source
• Introduces an innovative model of the universal developmental course of caring, from infancy to adulthood
• Discusses the idea that to be caring also consists, at times, of being harsh, punitive, and even aggressive
• Highlights that the caring motivational system includes proactive desire to care not only reactions to needs