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Chapter 5

Chapter 5 cultural psyc.docx

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York University
PSYC 3350
Francois Lalonde

Chapter 5 Development and Socialization  culture shapes many of the norms that govern our behaviour o ex. personal space: Venezuelans prefer closer conversational distances, and Japanese prefer wider conversational distances, compared withAmericans  Two possibilities for cultural differences: 1) inherited genetic tendencies 2) early experiences with their environments Universal brains develop into culturally variable minds  our nature is that of a cultural being  our universal biological foundation is shaped by our experiences, such that we are able to thrive in an extremely broad array of cultural environments Sensitive periods for cultural socialization  a sensitive period is a period of time in an organism's development that allows for the relatively easy acquisition of a set of skills Sensitive periods for language acquisition  no other species is dependent on their language skills or has a complex language system as humans  evidences for a sensitive period of language acquisition: o people's abilities to discriminate among different sounds  humans are capable of producing, recognizing, and using appr. 150 phonemes; however no language uses more than 70 of them  people are not able to discriminate easily between some phonemes that are not in their own language ex. Japanese who is only exposed to Japanese language can't distinguish between “la” and “ra”, and “ba” and “va”  research with infants suggests that young infants can discriminate among all phonemes that humans are able to produce  when we learn a language, we perceive sounds categorically  the universal human ability of being able to distinguish all possible phonemes depends on the critical window of language development  early in life (before puberty) our brains are especially pliable for organizing themselves in response to language input o studies of bilingual individual's brains  for bilinguals who learned their second language later in life, one part of the brain is active when they hear their second language and another then they hear their native language  in contrast, bilinguals who learned earlier in life showed activation in the same part of the brain, regardless of whether they were hearing their second language or their native one  most compelling kind of evidence is to experimentally raise some children with no language input until they were 15 or so, and then try to teach them a language and measure their performance. This is not done, and sometimes called the “forbidden experiment”  we are socialized to understand different languages- there is no genes Sensitive periods forAcquiring Culture  language and culture are both meaning systems that we acquire through our social interactions and they depend greatly on each other  measuring the acquisition of culture less straight forward than measuring acquisition of language  study with Hong Kong immigrants: identification with Chinese culture was not predicted by any of the variables in the study; identification with Canadian culture showed that people had a difficult time acquiring new cultural information after the age 15 Cultural differences in psychological processes emerge with age  cultural differences in psychological processes more pronounced with age o ex. eastAsians and NorthAmericans differ in how they expect the future to unfold: N.A more likely to expect trends to be linear, whereas east Asians= non linear  cultural differences identified for a number of phenomena: explanations of others' behaviours, social loafing, and tendencies to focus on positive aspects of self How do early childhood experiences differ across cultures? o one key source of cultural practices that guide children's development is their interactions with their parents Infants Personal space  Study: Keller studied parenting interactions with a 3 month infant in five diverse cultural contexts. Results found that urban European babies tend to occupy their own physical space, and they are often face to face contact with mothers.  Different cultural experiences can affect the rate of children's physical development. ex. Practices which put infants to sleep on their backs can delay when children crawl, roll over, or learn to stand  an important determinant of personal space of infants is where you put the baby.  European descendants and grew up in a N.A. household likely to have a separate baby room  In many societies, children continue to sleep in the same bed as their parents until they are well into their primary school years. Practice of “co-sleeping” also common in other subcultures in the US- ex.AfricaAmericans,Asians and Hispanics  Issues of children co-sleeping with parents are not seen as a matter of personal choice for north Americans- it is seen as behaviours that reflect the moral value of the parents. ex. Could be called the wrong choice, or be told you need “professional guidance”  reasons for co-sleeping in other cultures could be due to availability of space; they don't have the same luxury as Americans  study about sleeping arrangements with Indians andAmericans: o Indians guided by four moral principles in deciding which sleeping arrangements were appropriate: 1) most important principle was “incest avoidance”- post pubescent members of the family of the opposite sex should not sleep in rooms together 2) second most important principle was “protection of the vulnerable”- young children who are vulnerable should not be left alone at night 3) third was “female chastity anxiety”- unmarried post pubescent women should always be chaperoned to protect them from engaging in any sexual activity 4) “respect for hierarchy”- post pubescent boys are conferred social status by allowing them to not have to sleep with parents or young children o Americans were governed by different principles: 1) incest avoidance was also the most important principle 2) second most important was “sacred couple” in which participants believed that married couples should be given their own space for emotional and sexual intimacy (prized in westerners, but often violated by other cultures) 3) third most important was “autonomy ideal”- belief that young children who are needy and vulnerable should learn to be self reliant and take care of themselves Parenting styles  Baumrind's tripartite typology: o authoritarian parenting- involves high demands on children, with strict rules and little open dialogue between parent and child. Typically involves low levels of warmth or responsiveness by the parents to the child's protests. o Authoritative parenting- child centered approach in which parents hold high expectations of the maturity of their children,
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