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Chapter 3

Week 2 - CH3 & CH4

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University of Guelph
PSYC 2310
John Walsh

Lecture 3 - Tuesday, January 14, 2014 CH. 3 – SELF ACROSS CULTURE • Your culture makes you who you are • Aclassic joke: o In Britain everything is permitted except that which is forbidden o In Germany everything is forbidden except that which is permitted o And in France everything is permitted even that which is forbidden Definition of culture • There is not one definition of a culture • Culture comprises (1) the human-made part of the environment and (2) the social institutions of the society such as norms, rules, and laws. • Shared understanding and values • Some of the norms and rules that exist in Canada that reflects its culture: o Laws on homosexuality o The way we interact with out children or the way we teach • Not only is your culture around you but it’s part of who you are • Where is culture? o Culture is in the heads of its members o Culture changes through generations because the values and norms shift through generations Culture imposes a set of values • Culture shapes out experiences. o “in some cultures, I would be considered normal.” • when you step outside of your culture you realize how different you are from others o ecology shapes cultures o ecology -> culture -> social behavior sameness vs. differences • there are universal behavior and experiences: o smiling is universal o intimacy exist in every culture, people have similar understanding of what it is about o social greetings o burying the dead o sympathy and empathy are basically universal o emotions • there are cultural difference in practicing social behavior and interpreting experiences (not language) o example: religion, food (people across the global need to it, but what do we eat, when do we eat and how we eat varies from culture), marriage, etc. o religion is the reflection of attitude - for example having children when you are not married (Indian vs. Iceland) o in North America you get married to one person where as in other countries it is acceptable to have more than one wife o The Cameroon example – guys father dies, he inherits everything that belonged to his father including his fathers wives and if they were in the child bearing age, he was to mate with them. It may seem strange to N.A but it is tradition for them, part of their culture. • Humans are more similar to one another than different Who am I? • Self – Concept -> Independent self – I like dogs, I believe in peace, I smoke stud, I’ma dreamer, I play guitar • Interdependent self (how you connect with others) -> I’m the only child, I’m a psychology major, I’m Buddhist, I am Japanese, I live with my parents • Your uniqueness comes first • In North American… Self: Starting with anecdotes • In America, “the squeaky wheel gets the grease.” o You want to stand out o In N.A they say eat your food, there are people around the world who are starving not eat bla • In Japan, “the nail that stand out gets pounded down.” o It is not good to stand out, you need to be a unit with everyone else. Do not draw attention to yourself o If you don’t eat your food, think of the poor man who made this rice. If you don’t eat it, his effort would be wasted and you should do your part to eat. You are not appreciating the farmers effort. • One valuing the difference and the other emphasizing fitting in • “It is good to know the truth, but better to speak to the palm trees”Arab proverb • “Say what you mean and what you say” American proverb Investigation of personal ads • 28 Single white male, 6’1, 160 lbs. Handsome, artistic, ambitious, seeks attractive white female, 24 – 29, for friendship, romance ad permanent partnership. o Vs. • Gujarati Vaishnav parents invite correspondence from never married Gujararit well settled, preferably green card holder from respectable family for green card holder daughter 29 years, 5’4”, good looking, doing CPA Independent Vs. Interdependent • Self is autonomous vs. self is connected with other • Self behaviors, primarily as a consequence of internal attributes vs. behavior of interdependent self is contingent on what the actor perceives to be the thoughts, feelings and actions of others • The independent self gives rise to self-actualization vs. the interdependent self gives rise to fulfilling and creating obligation. Three aspects of self • Triandis (1989)
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