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Chapter 5

Textbook Ch. 5: Self and Personality

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Department
Psychology
Course
PSY321H1
Professor
Nick Rule
Semester
Fall

Description
CHAPTER 5 SELF AND PERSONALITY - Markus et al (2006) analysis of Japanese and American Olympic athletes’ victory accounts - Americans focused on how their performance reflected their own personal characteristics - Japanese focused more on how their performance was guided by the expectations of others Who Am I? - Twenty-Statements Test, complete statements that begin with “I am...” - may include culturally shaped statements (e.g. “I am a Vancouver Canucks fan.”) - reveal only a superficial influence of culture, it merely provides the content - what categories of statements do we consider when we think about ourselves? - Ma & Schoeneman (1997) used the 20ST on Americans and Kenyans - divided Kenyan sample into groups based on amount of exposure to Western culture - most popular self-descriptions for Americans were personal characteristics (48%), in Masai and Samburu, indigenous Kenyan groups, less than 2% - statements reflecting social identity, specifically, roles and membership, accounted for 60% of Masai and Samburu self-descriptions, accounted for 7% of American - Kenyan undergrads resembled American undergrads, Kenyan workers more closely resembled the Masai and Samburu Independent versus Interdependent Views of Self - independent view of self - the self derives its identity from inner attributes that are stable across situations and lifespan, they are perceived to be unique - attributes are significant for regulating behaviour and individuals feel an obligation to publicly advertise themselves in ways consistent with these attributes - graphic view of the independent self (derived from the writings of Markus and Kitayama) - circle around the individual doesn’t overlap with the borders surrounding relationships - individuals experience their identities as largely distinct from their relationships - X’s inside circles reflect aspects of identity - important aspects tend to lie within the individual - border around the individual is a solid line - the self is bounded, its experience is stable and doesn’t change much from situation to situation - border around the in-group is a dotted line - others can move between the boundary relatively easily, key boundary is between self and non-self - interdependent view of self - the self is viewed as relational entity that is fundamentally connected to, and sustained by, a number of significant relationships - behaviour is contingent upon perceptions of others’ thoughts, feelings, and actions - graphic view of the interdependent self - border surrounding the self overlaps with an individual’s significant relationships - individual’s identity is connected with others - X’s that indicate key aspects of identity rest at the intersection between the individual and their significant relationships - relationships indicate the groups to which a person belongs - aspects of identity that are based on internal characteristics are relatively less central to their identity - dotted line encapsulates the individual - identity is somewhat fluid, depending on the situation, and the role occupied in the situation, the experience of self will vary - the border that separates that ingroup from the outgroup is a solid line to indicate a relatively significant and stable distinction - ingroup and outgroup members are viewed quite distinctly and the individual may behave different toward these individuals - self-concepts, the ways that people view themselves, are constructed across cultures enabling us to predict how specific psychological phenomena will differ across cultures Individualism and Collectivism - different views of self emerge in places where there are cultural practices that sustain them - people in individualistic cultures are more likely to elaborate on independent aspects of themselves, they come to feel distinct from others and emphasize self-sufficiency - people in collectivist cultures are more likely to attend to interdependent aspects of their self- concepts - Geert Hofstede, hired by IBM to explore values and concerns of their workers around the world - mapped out the world in terms of its individualism for 40 countries - most individualistic country is the US, followed by other English-speaking countries and W. European nations - most collectivist countries were nations in Latin America and Asia - Vandello & Cohen (1999) most collectivist state is Hawaii, followed by Utah - least collectivistic states were in the Mountain W., the Great Plains, the NE, Midwest - most psychological research has been conducted in countries high in individualism, within the US, most of that research has been conducted in individualistic regions Beyond Individualism and Collectivism - other cultural dimensions investigated include power distance, uncertainty avoidance, vertical- horizontal social structure, relationship structure, intellectual autonomy, context-dependence, social cynicism, social complexity, societal tightness - none of these other dimensions have the explanatory power or empirical support as individualism-collectivism A Note on Heterogeneity of Individuals and Cultures - cultural differences described in this book reflect general patterns of differences, not all-or- none statements Gender and Culture - Kashima et al (1995) asked men and women in Western and Eastern cultures to complete a number of different measures of independence and interdependence - simplified the different items into four underlying measures - collectivism (“I will do things for my group even though I have to sacrifice my interests”), agency (“I stick to my opinions even when others don’t support me”), assertiveness, relatedness (“I feel like doing something for people in trouble because I can almost feel their pains”) - Western cultures scored higher on agency and assertiveness, Eastern cultures scored higher on collectivism and relatedness - only gender difference, women scored higher on relatedness than men - Williams & Best (1990) asked men and women from 25 countries whether 300 trait adjectives was more characteristic of men or women - large number of items revealed a consistent cross-cultural consensus - slight trend that the male stereotypical traits were viewed as more admirable - across all cultures, male stereotypes were perceived to be considerably more active and were more associated with perceptions of strength - overall, there seem to be similarities across cultures in gender stereotypes that seem to transcend cultural explanations - Sex Role Ideology, scale investigated attitudes toward how men and women should act - in Netherlands, Finland, and Germany, on average, people expressed views that men and women should be treated similarly - in India, Pakistan, and Nigeria, people tended to believe that the roles, obligations, and rights of men and women are clearly difference - regardless of where the data was collected, within a culture, men and women tended to share similar views about gender equality - males had significantly more traditional gender views - variables that predicted egalitarian gender views - percentage of people who embraced a particular religion - Christianity, more likely to have egalitarian gender views, Muslims, more traditional gender views - more northern countries expressed more egalitarian views - the more urbanized the country, the more likely people had egalitarian views - country’s individualism score positively correlated with egalitarian views - essentialize, to reflect an underlying unchangeable essence - Americans tend to view male gender identity to be more essentialized - not unusual for women to present themselves like men, is unusual for men to present themselves as women - Hindu Indians view the female identity as pure, strong and powerful - asked participants to imagine that Kumar (male) switched his brain with Mina (female), how would Kumar and Mina’s body be expected to act - Indians felt that Kumar’s body would act more like a woman, Mina’s
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