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Lecture 8

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Elizabeth Page- Gould

PSYB10 – Lecture 8 Prof’s Speech - Purple Slide 4 – What is Culture? - An ever-changing , constructive stimulus which shapes the way individuals perceive and contribute to the world o 1. Dynamic – culture is always changing, the culture that you experience is not the same as the culture your parents experienced o 2. Influenced by members of the culture – on a fundamental level – culture is a value system, beliefs and norms that the current group of people who represent that culture embrace and understand, do so as a part of their identity o 3. Influences members of the culture – culture shapes us, culture is a big situation that all of our little situations are situated within - Nationality o The country you were born in - Ethnicity o Your cultural heritage; place of origin – different from race - Identification o The degree to which you include group membership (i.e. your nationality) in your self- concept or sense of who you are  Just because you are one ethnicity or another, doesn’t mean that that heritage necessarily compels your behaviour, however, the more you identify with your heritage, the more it will shape your behaviour and recognition - Some argue that culture is a Meaning System from which we get: o Symbols, language, experiences, myths, understanding of the world o Metaphysics  Beliefs about the world, universe, & existence  Most cultures provide a metaphysical explanation  Most cultures have some form of origin stories or religious tradition that is consistent throughout the culture  Culture often provides us with understanding as to why we are here Slide 8 – Individualist Cultures - Psychological construct where all cultures vary along the dimension of how much that culture values individual autonomy, and individual agency vs. collective cultures - Emphasize personal achievement, even at the expense of others - Greater emphasis on competition as a whole in these cultures which tends to shape interpersonal dynamic and social behaviour - E.g., Canada, Western Europe Slide 9 – Collectivist Cultures - Continuum – some collective cultures are more collective than others - Emphasize social roles, interconnectedness, lifting up the group as a whole, and collective responsibilities, even at the expense of the individual - Greater emphasis on co-operation - E.g. China, Korea, Latin America o Can have cultures that really value both things – Japan is very high on collectivism and individualism Slide 10 – Political Climate - Matters a lot - Political structure greatly constrains behaviour, roles, norms and cultural expression of the members of that society - A single political structure shift can drastically change a culture - Sometimes government change can extinguish a culture - Governments have a great deal of power over the current culture and its future - It is usually hard to disambiguate certain behaviours from others – i.e. behaviours that are based on political structures vs. just cultural Slide 11 – Religious Beliefs - Culture as a concept tends to be interwoven with religion - Most cultures have their own religion – sometimes rejecting one’s religion is viewed as rejecting one’s culture - Dominant religious beliefs characterize a culture’s moral reasoning and motivations - Religion also affects social roles and norms - Some behaviours that may be associated with religion may vary by culture (i.e. achieving lack of humility in women with hijabs – some cover all of the woman’s hair, some show a little hair) - The concept of these behaviours comes from a religion, but the culture itself shapes the way the concept is manifested in that religion Slide 12 – Ecological Differences - Environmental context strongly shapes the development and focus of a culture o i.e. the number of words people have to describe different things – highly relevant to environment Slide 13 – Language-Related Methodological Issues - Is the meaning of our words “lost in translation” when we translate from one language to another? o Is meaning of verbal/written communication changed by translation? Slide 14 – Lost in Translation? - Maybe-so evidence o Method:  1. Participants (Ps) who spoke Argentinean-Spanish, Chinese, or English  2. Showed Ps an array of objects  3. What word would P use for each object? o Results: # of w ords used for pictured objects by culture  A-S: 15, Eng.: 5, Chin: 7 different words collectively for the 6 objects  1 Chinese term applied to all objects, but translated into “jar” in English – which we would not use to apply to all 6 objects  We have different words to represent the same object/concept because the targets were always the same - Maybe-not evidence o Method:  Participants (Ps) who spoke Argentinean-Spanish, Chinese, or English  Showed Ps the same array of objects  Asked Ps to group objects according to similarity o Results:  Speakers of all three languages arranged the objects into the same groups o Conclusion:  While we may call objects by different names, we group them similarly; still see the same relationship between the objects  But languages don’t map on directly to one another Slide 18 – Back Translation - Translating a word, phrase, or sentence multiple times between two languages, fixing discrepancies, until both translations yield the same phrase o Making sure the translation has the same meaning as in the original language - Process: o 1. Translate from Language 1 to Language 2 o 2. Translate from Language 2 to Language 1 o 3. Repeat until all discrepancies have been fixed Slide 20 – Cognitive Framing - We think of cultures as being The perceptual framework through which you view the world o Affects the attributions/interpretations made for events - Cultural Primes (Hong, Chiu, Kung, 1997) o Priming someone with a familiar icon of their culture will temporarily increase their identification with that culture; that person will behave more like their culture than normal because it makes certain aspects of their self-concept more accessible than it is normally o Method: Prime Chinese participants with Chinese icons (100 ms – which for the most part is a subliminal prime) versus Western icons o Results: Observed greater endorsement of traditional Chinese values after Chinese cultural primes (after completing survey)  Those primed with western icons endorse Chinese values much less o Provides strong support for the idea that culture affects the way we interpret the world and how much we endorse other aspects of our culture Slide 22 – Dialectical Thinking - A cognitive reasoning structure/way to think through which an individual interprets the environment - Essentially a belief system about the way the world works - 3 principles: o Change: Everything is in flux / constantly changing; nothing stays the same, linear thinker views causes of events and events themselves as stable o Contradiction: Opposing propositions may both be true  If you’re a dialectical thinker, contradiction doesn’t bother you, able to hold both things as true  Someone can be both very nice and very mean  Linear thinkers think it is not possible for both things to be true o Wholism: Everything is interrelated/interdependent  Explains why two contradictory things can be true – when things appears to be contradictory, dialectical thinker looks for greater way to assign two things and thus understand how both things may be true o Dialectical thinkers are people who believe that the world is constantly changing, that contradiction and paradox occurs all the time, but that we are all a part of a whole o Linear, dialectical thinking – continuum – most people are in the middle o Cultures differ on these principles - Peng & Nisbett (1999) o Usually say that eastern cultures are more likely to be dialectical thinkers in part because they believe that dialectical thinking comes from Confucius thinking and Dowas (?) thinking – but that is speculative o Method:  Compare proverbs from China and US  Look at degree of linearity or dialecticism in proverb:  Eg., Linear Thinking: “For example is no proof”  Linear thinking is an algorithm form of thinking, i.e. if this, then that, as opposed to a more heuristic form of thinking  Dialectical Thinking: “Beware of your friends, not your enemies”  Dialectical is a more associative form of reasoning  Dialectical proverb because it seems to be contradictory in what friends and enemies are o Results:  Chinese had four times as many dialectical proverbs as Americans  Preferences: Americans preferred linear to dialectical American proverbs  Chinese preferred dialectical to linear Chinese proverbs  Chinese also preferred dialectical to linear Yiddish proverbs o Important point because it shows that they don’t just like their culture’s proverbs, but the concepts of the proverbs Slide 25 – Emotional Complexity - The experience of many emotions at the same time, especially if those emotions are a mixture of positive and negative feelings o Tend to find, in America, people tend to report feeling only one emotion, or a few positive emotions together, rare to hear happy and sad at the same time, whereas in China, people report different emotions at the same time, i.e. proud, but fearful - People have different degrees of complexity of their emotional experience that is predicted by their culture and to some extend their cultural value system Slide 26 – Emotional Complexity and Culture - Correlations between positive & negative emotions – how much do they co-occur across cultures (Schimmack, Oishi, & Diener, 2002) o In US  Negative correlation  E.g., If you feel happy, then you feel less sad o In East Asians  No correlation  E.g., Your level of sadness is unrelated to your level of happiness  Lack of correlation just means that experience of positive emotions and experience of negative emotions are independent of one another  Suggesting that these emotions can occur together but they don’t have to - Chinese & Koreans have a positive correlation between positive & negative emotional intensity (Bagozzi, et. al., 1999) o Whether or not you have an emotional experience is different from how intense the experience is Slide 27 – Social Norms and Social Roles - Culture is what gives us social norms and social roles; what is normative in one culture may be anti-normative in another culture - Social norms are completely relative to cultural context o Punishment for violation of social norms varies by culture, too - Importance of Social Roles varies by culture o East Asians list significantly more social roles in Twenty Statements Test  Suggesting that roles and norms may be more valued in those cultures than others Slide 29 – Acculturation - Successful integration of the heritage of two cultures and finding the ways in which they are interwoven with each other - Adoption of new culture through incorporating value systems of both new and original cultures; finding ways that your new culture’s values fit into and incorporate your existing culture’s values - Ideal of biculturality - Usually juxtaposed to assimilation Slide 30 – Assimilation - Complete adoption of a new culture - Tends to have more negative outcomes for the individual - Adoption of a new culture and simultaneous rejection of original culture Slide 31 – Bicultural Identity Integration (BII) - Degree to which two cultural identities are integrated into a super-ordinate bicultural identity - 2 Key Components that we view our new culture and our original culture that either facilitate this integration or make it hard to integrate the two: o Perceived Harmony vs. Conflict between original and new culture o Perceived Similarity vs. Distance between the two  If they are very different, it may be harder to integrate them, whereas if you see them as very similar, it will be easier to create this emergent identity o Every individual makes this decision – one bicultural person may say one thing, while another says something else Slide 32 – BII & Frame Switching - Benet-Martínez, Leu, Lee, & Morris (2002) o Method:  Bring Chinese-Americans Biculturals into the lab  Measure BII  Prime them with either traditional Chinese or US cultural primes  Measure attributions on fish image task – what’s going on with the fish in the front (situational/collectivist attributions)  When you are primed with your culture, you behave more like your culture o Results: internal and external attributions by prime  Higher numbers indicate internal attributions; higher numbers are the equivalent of acting more American, lower numbers are the equivalent of acting more Chinese  Blue line – people who are high in BII; when they are primed with American primes, they make more internal attributions, when primed with Chinese primes, they make more external attributions  Green line – people who are low in BII; complete reversal of blue line; when primed with Chinese primes, they make more internal attributions (act more American) and when primed with American primes, they make more external attributions (act more Chinese) – opposite identity is becoming more salient Slide 37 – Social Hierarchy - An implicit or explicit rank order of individuals or groups with respect to a valued social dimension - Occurs along the lines of power or along the lines of status - Sometimes the rank order is very obvious (i.e. this person is my boss), but sometimes it is not so obvious - not explicitly stated, but kind of known within the group (i.e. this person is cooler than that person); rank order can be very clear or more subtle and associative - Hierarchy has to have at least two levels, but people can share the same rank - Ranking system is done according to some valued social dimension – the ways in which we rank people, i.e. the way the hierarchy forms, depends on what is important to the group Slide 41 – Social Power - An asymmetric control over valued resources in social relations - Key: Based in resources, which belong to an actor/social object - Power is conferred through a number of channels Slide 42 – Power Hierarchy - Rank-ordering of individuals with respect to the amount of resources each controls o i.e. if you control all the water, you will be at the top - One type of social hierarchy Slide 43 – Social Status - The extent to which an individual or group is respected or admired by others - Exists entirely in the eyes of others and is conferred by them - Resources are irrelevant to status - Social status has to do with the esteem that you have within a group, essentially how liked and respected one is by the group - Exists entirely in the eyes of the others around you - Social status is something that other people give to you; it is not something that you can claim in the same way that you can claim power Slide 44 – Status Hierarchy - A rank-ordering of individuals or groups according to the amount of respect accorded by others - Key: usually more volatile and malleable than power hierarchies – because if the status of an individual changes, so does the status hierarchy; Changes only as the amount of respect for a target individual or group changes - Another type of social hierarchy Slide 46 – Formal Hierarchies - Explicitly-set social roles that vary by rank order with higher-ranking roles holding greater value - People move between roles, but the hierarchy exists apart from the individuals who fill a given role at a given time o Hierarchical structure will always, or almost always, remain the same, with the exception of different people filling different roles, but the roles will remain the same - Signs of a Formal Hierarchy: o Job titles – presence of job titles indicates that someone can fill the role o Reporting structures – whoever you report to is your boss o Organizational charts – that clearly maps out hierarchical structure - Sources of value in higher-ranked positions: ; give more value as you ascend through the ranks o Control over resources (Power)  Those at the top tend to have more control over resources o Deference from subordinates (Status)  The higher rank you attain, you get esteem and status along the way - Typically an assumption of legitimacy to the hierarchy exists o We tend to believe that a CEO of a company deserves to be there, i.e. is the best o We tend to believe that hierarchies are based on meritocracy – the best people get to the top because they have the most merit and skills Slide 48 – Informal Hierarchies - Rank-ordering of individuals or groups that develops organically on at least one valued social dimension o Occurs kind of subtlety, sometimes without outside awareness, develops organically – it is not a hierarchy where someone is saying “you are going to be in charge of this group, and you that group” (formal), in an informal – it may be a social group of friends over interaction time and those higher on the hierarchy are the ones we pay more attention to, look at more, etc. – subtle cues - No clearly-delineated social roles; ranking is not explicit - Sources of value in higher-ranked positions: o Those with more power tend to have more Influence over group decisions (Power) o Greater attention from others (Status)  Attention is the key social capital that humans have Slide 50 – Attention, Power, and Status - Attention plays a key role in social hierarchies - We give more attention to higher ranked individuals - We pay less attention to lower-ranked individuals - Attention applies both to higher power and higher status individuals, but we tend to use it as a sign of status because status is harder to measure Slide 51 – Attention and Power Among Humans - Erber & Fiske (1984) o Method:  1. 1 Participant and 1 Confederate interacted in dyads  2. Participant’s potential to receive a prize was either dependent on the Confederate or not dependent – dependent on if they thought the experimenter decided who would get the prize or if they thought the “other participant” would get the prize; i.e. does the experiment hold the power, or does the confederate hold the power over your resources  3. They were shown a series of information tidbits about the Confederate while looking time was measured in seconds o Results: Reading time of information about Confederate by Outcome dependency  When participants believed confederate would determine if they would get the prize, they looked at the confederate’s information for almost a minute  People who did not believe confederate had control, looked at info
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