C. Daniel Batson
is professor of psychology emeritus at the University of Kansas where he taught for thirty-six years. His major research interests are pro-social emotion, motivation, and behavior, in particular the relationship between empathic emotion and altruistic motivation and the behavioral correlates of religion. Recently he has collaborated with neuroscientists to look at the neural underpinnings of empathy and personal distress. In the realm of psychology of religion, Dr. Batson has argued that the traditional distinction between intrinsic and extrinsic religious orientations does not exhaust all possibilities and stressed a construct he calls Quest, a form of religious motivation in which searching is seen as more important than finding answers. Educated initially at Davidson College and Yale University, he took his B.S. degree with high honors at the University of Tennessee. He went on to study at Princeton Theological Seminary, earning a B.D. and then a Ph.D. in religious education summa cum laude in 1971. Dr. Batson received a Ph.D. in psychology from Princeton University in 1972. He joined the Kansas faculty as an assistant professor of psychology and was promoted to full professor in 1981. He retired from Kansas in 2008, but remains an adjunct professor at the University of Tennessee, a position he has held since 2006. Dr. Batson also has been a visiting scholar at Wolfson College, Oxford, and at the University of Georgia, a visiting professor at the University of Texas, a visiting fellow at Princeton, and a Laurence Rockefeller Visiting Fellow at Princeton’s Center for Human Values. His research has been supported by the National Science Foundation among other institutions. A former Mid-America State University Honor Lecturer, he is the recipient of the 1988 William James Award given by Division 36 of the American Psychological Association and a Mortar Board Outstanding Educator Award. In addition to some 150 papers published in scientific journals or as chapters in volumes of collected works, he is the author or co-author of four books, (with J.C. Beker and W.M. Clark) Commitment without Ideology
(1973), (with W.L. Ventis) The Religious Experience: A Social-Psychological Perspective
(1982), The Altruism Question: Toward a Social-Psychological Answer
(1991), and, most recently, (with Patricia A. Schoenrade and W.L. Ventis) Religion and the Individual: A Social-Psychological Perspective
, which was published by Oxford University Press (OUP) in 1993. His latest book, Altruism in Humans
, is forthcoming from OUP.