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Not all mutualism is fair, and not all fairness is mutualistic

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 February 2013

Alex Shaw
Department of Psychology, Yale University, New Haven, CT 06511.
Joshua Knobe
Department of Psychology, Yale University, New Haven, CT 06511.


The target article convincingly argues that mutualistic cooperation is supported by partner choice. However, we will suggest that mutualistic cooperation is not the basis of fairness; instead, fairness is based on impartiality. In support of this view, we show that adults are willing to destroy others' resources to avoid inequality, a result predicted by impartiality but not by mutualistic cooperation.

Open Peer Commentary
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2013

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