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Lecture 13

PSY230H1 Lecture Notes - Lecture 13: Geert Hofstede, Individualism, Samburu PeoplePremium

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Amanda Sharples

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Lecture 10 the cultural approach.
Culture an ever-changing, constructive stimulus which shapes the way individuals
perceive and contribute the world.
I. Dynamic
II. Influenced by members of the culture.
III. Influenced members of the culture.
What is culture?
1. 2 ways to think about culture
I. A kind of information information that is acquired from other people
one’s species through social learning that is capable of affecting
individual’s behaviours.
II. A particular group a group of individuals who are existing within some
kind of shared context (place, values and beliefs).
We assign different meanings to different things across cultures based on
values and religious practices. (ex. Agricultural products)
People consider different things as important across cultures.
People have different social norms in different cultures, and how strictly
we follow or enforce these social norms.
2. 3 ways to think about culture
I. Nationality country or region of the world a person lives in.
II. Ethnicity the cultural heritage.
- The background of family members is also important.
III. Identification the degree to which you include group membership in your
self-concept or sense of who you are.
3. Meaning system
Symbols, languages, experiences
- Beliefs about the world, universe, & existence.
Describing culture
1. 4 factors identified by Geert Hofstede
1) Individualism/Collectivism the degree to which people in a society are
integrated into groups.
Individualism emphasize personal achievement and being competitive,
even at the expense of others.
- Greater emphasis on competition.
- Eg. Canada, Western Europe.
Collectivism emphasize on social roles and collective responsibilities,
even at the expense of the individual.

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- Sacrifice what’s best for you and do what’s best for the community.
- More emphasis on co-operation.
- Eg. China, Korea, Latin America.
2) Power distance the extent to which the less powerful members of
organizations and institutions accept and expect that power is distributed
High power distance acceptance of established hierarchies within
society and acceptancy of inequality.
- Eg. Russia.
Low power distance tendency to challenge established hierarchies and
to stand up against inequality.
- Eg. Norway, Finland, Denmark.
3) Uncertainty avoidance a society’s tolerance for ambiguity.
High uncertainty avoidance very little tolerance of ambiguity. Belief
that one lone truth dictates.
Low uncertainty avoidance greater tolerance of ambiguity. More
acceptance of differing thoughts/ideas.
4) Masculinity/Femininity
Masculinity a preference in society for achievement, heroism,
assertiveness and material rewards for success.
- Eg. Japan.
Femininity a preference for cooperation, modesty, caring for the weak
and quality of life.
- Eg. Norway and Finland.
Why is culture important?
1. Study (Herrmann et al., 2007)
- 2.5-year-old child and chimpanzee approach physical problem-solving
tasks and social problem-solving tasks.
(Lecture slides)
- The child and the chimpanzees behave similarly in the physical solving
task, whereas in the social problem solving task the child did better
than the chimpanzees.
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