Week 8 Notes
Week 8 Notes Psyc 287
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This 7 page Class Notes was uploaded by Ashley Choma on Friday October 14, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to Psyc 287 at University of Nebraska Lincoln taught by Dr. Pearce in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 14 views. For similar materials see Psychology of Personality in Psychology at University of Nebraska Lincoln.
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Date Created: 10/14/16
Psychology of Personality PSYC 287 Week 8 Notes 10/11 Chapter 13 Reading Assignment Cultural Variation in Experience, Behavior, and Personality Culture and Psychology o Culture comes into play for two reasons: Individuals may differ from each other to some extent because they belong to different cultural groups Members of some groups may differ from each other in distinctive ways o Cross-cultural universals versus specificity What is culture? Psychological attributes of groups Enculturation – the process where a child picks up the culture into which she is born Acculturation – the process where a person moves from one country to another may gradually pick up the culture of her new home The Importance of Cross-Cultural Differences o Cross cultural understanding o Generalizability of theory and research o Varieties of human experience Characteristics of Cultures o Etics and Emics Etics – the universal components of an idea Emics – the particular aspects of an idea o Tough and Easy In easy cultures, individuals can pursue many different goals and at least some of them are relatively simple to attain in tougher cultures, only a few goals are viewed as valuable and few ways are available to achieve them o Achievement and Affiliation o Complexity o Tightness and Looseness Contrasts cultures that tolerate very little deviation from proper behavior (tight cultures) with those that allow fairly large deviations from cultural norms (loose cultures) o Head versus Heart Some cities emphasize “strengths of the heart” – gratitude, hope, love, and religiosity Others emphasize “strengths of the head” – artistic excellence, creativity, curiosity, critical thinking, and learning o Collectivism and Individualism The self and others Collectivist cultures – the needs of the group are more important than the rights of individuals Individualist cultures – the single person is more important Personality and collectivism Personality itself might have a different meaning – or no meaning at all – in collectivist societies Self-regard The individualist’s need for positive self-regard may be felt less acutely by a member of a collectivist culture Sociability, emotion, and motivation Collectivist cultures are more sociable People in individualist and collectivist cultures have different fundamental motivations Behavioral consistency The individualist view of the self assumes that the cause of behavior lies within the person The more socially embedded member of a collectivist culture, by contrast, might be expected to change his behavior more as a function of the particular immediate situation Verticality and compassion o Honor, Face, and Dignity Western cultures are dignity cultures – individuals are valuable in their own right and this value does not come from what other people think of them Cultures of honor are said to emerge in environments where the forces of civilizations – such as laws and police – are weak or nonexistent and people must protect themselves, their families, and their own property Cultures of face merge in societies that have stable hierarchies based on cooperation Cultural Assessment and Personality Assessment o Comparing the same traits across cultures Cultural differences in personality can be consequential o Different Traits for Different Cultures? Some researchers have argued that only 3 of the Big Five – conscientiousness, extraversion, and agreeableness – should be considered truly universal o Thinking Holistic perception and the self E.g. an American observer may look at a scene and see a specific object or person, whereas the Japanese observer is more likely to see and remember the larger context Independent thinking Asians compared to Americans when it comes to thinking as far as memorization (Asians) compared to independent thinking (Americans) o Values The search for universal values Finding universal values has two implications o We might infer that a value held in all cultures is in some sense a “real” value that goes beyond cultural judgment o If we could find a set of common values, we might be able to use these to settle disputes between cultures by developing compromises based on the areas of universal agreement Cultural differences in values The individualist cultural ethos emphasizes liberty, freedom of choice, rights, and individual needs The collectivist cultural ethos emphasizes obligations, reciprocity, and duties to the group The Origins of Cultural Differences o Avoiding the Issues The philosophy of deconstructionism holds that reality has no meaning apart from what humans invent or “construct” o The Ecological Approach Ecology – culture – socialization – personality – behavior In this model, behavior comes from personality, which comes from implicit and explicit teaching during childhood, which is a product of the culture o Cultural Differences from Genetics? McCrae (2004) points out that any discussion of genetic differences between cultural groups should be sure to emphasize the following: The differences are small, at most Traits are likely to be even weaker predictors of behavior at the cultural level than they are at the individual level People within cultures are widely different from each other The data available so far can be explained in several different ways Challenges and new directions for cross-cultural research o Ethnocentrism Judging another culture from the point of view of your own o The exaggeration of cultural differences Outgroup homogeneity bias o Culture and values Cultural relativism – the phenomenologically based idea that all cultural views of reality are equally valid o Subcultures and multiculturalism 10/11 in class notes Chapter 12 cont. Positive Psychology o Ryan & Dec, Csíkszentmihály Mihály and Martin Seligman o Research the traits and situational factors that promote a happy, meaningful life o Develop interventions that help people build more fulfilling lives o Three areas of focus: Positive memories, experiences, and emotions (content with past, happy in present, hopeful about future) Positive individual traits (virtues pg. 448) Positive institutions (ways to better the community) o Research: money, optimism, and virtues Core virtues (in the book pg. 448) Universality of Core Virtues Chapter 13 – Culture and Personality Working definition of culture o Very broad: Psychological attributes of groups This can include: Customs and habits, beliefs, and values, language and thought process “groups” can refer to people of differing: ethnicity, nationality, language, beliefs, interests Scope of Study o Cross-cultural psychological research examines: Whether and how people from different cultures differ from one another Whether and how people from different cultures are alike Whether and how people within a given culture are similar and different from one another o Note that each has implications for generalizability of research Comparing and Contrasting Cultures o Etics and emics Emics – thoughts, concepts, feelings, or behaviors that are determined by a culture’s customs and beliefs Can be very specific to a particular culture Can be difficult to translate; may be possible to find analogous Etics – thoughts, concepts, feelings, or behaviors that are more universally true across cultures Broad concepts Can be used relatively more readily to compare different cultures Etics o Tough vs. easy cultures o Tight vs. loose cultures Tight cultures have very strong norms and low tolerance for deviant behavior Loose cultures have weak social norms and high tolerance for deviant behavior Tightness // looseness can be influenced by diversity and population density o Head vs. Heart Cultures (468 – good example) Strengths of the head: creativity, learning, science Strengths of the heart: fairness, hope, love, faith o Collectivism vs. Individualism Collectivism: the needs of the group are more important than the needs of individuals Satisfaction associated with achieving harmony with group Roles or social hierarchies (status) are influential Tend to be “tight cultures” Individualism: independence is emphasized over relationship to group Satisfaction associated with self-esteem Roles and social hierarchies are flexible Tend to be “loose cultures” Vertical vs. horizontal cultures Refers to value place on equality within the culture Vertical and collectivistic: low equality, emphasis on serving group Vertical and individualist: low equality, emphasis on independence Horizontal and collectivism: high equality, emphasis on serving group Horizontal and individualistic: high equality, emphasis on independence o Honor, Face, and Dignity Three categories of cultures: Honor cultures value reputation and self-reliance, avoid appearance of weakness Face cultures emphasize respect for authority and tradition, and find value in fulfilling social roles Dignity cultures hold that individuals are inherently valuable and strong, and they need not compromise their values for other; personal freedom and equality are emphasized Culture and Personality Assessments o Comparing traits across nations: Studies using MMPI and measurements of Big 5 traits show differences across nations and across different regions of the same nation o However: It is not clear that the Big 5 traits have the same meaning in different nations There is evidence that conscientiousness, extraversion, and agreeableness are universal, but openness and neuroticism are not Research in other countries have revealed other big 5 traits Values o Are there “universal” values? Schwartz and Sagiv propose 10: Power, achievement, hedonism, stimulation, self- direction, understanding, benevolence, tradition, conformity, security o How do values differ across cultures? Moral reasoning Collectivist cultures emphasize obligations, reciprocity, and duties to the group Individualist cultures emphasize individual rights, freedoms, and needs Origins of Cultural Differences o Ecological Approach Cultures differ because they developed in different circumstances that presented different problems o Genetics Very little evidence, and what evidence exists shows tiny effects Studies focus on nationality and ethnicity Problems Facing Cross-Cultural Psychological Research o Ethnocentrism – how do you avoid having your view of other cultures be affected by your own? o Exaggeration of differences between nations/ethnicities (and minimizing differences within nations/ethnicities) Outgroup homogeneity bias o Cultural relativism – idea that all cultures are valid and should not be judged good or bad o Multicultural societies and individuals