Video: Sam Richards A Radical Experiment in Empathy

Sam Richards, a sociology professor at Penn State, expounds upon the process of empathy. By leading the audience through a re-narration of history and their own identity, he invites the audience to step into the shoes of someone else’s life. After exploring new hopes, fears, and perceptions as “the other,” connections and relationships are more easily visible. We encourage you to watch the entire video even if you do not agree with everything Richards says. This is a very challenging and interesting video.


  • What emotions did you feel as you watched this video? Why do you think you felt those particular emotions?
  • Who do you struggle with having empathy for?
  • Who do you wish would show empathy towards you?
  • Through your experience with conflict, individual to global level, what kind of distrusts or hurt do you have?
  • Watch a movie or read a book on a conflict outside of your world experience. Try to imagine yourself as one of the characters.