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Article
A cultural task analysis of implicit independence: Comparing North America, Western Europe, and East Asia
Journal of Personality and Social Psychology (2009)
  • Shinobu Kitayama
  • Hyekyung Park
  • Timur Sevincer
  • Mayumi Karasawa
  • Ayse K Uskul, University of Essex
Abstract
Informed by a new theoretical framework that assigns a key role to cultural tasks (culturally prescribed means to achieve cultural mandates such as independence and interdependence) in mediating the mutual influences between culture and psychological processes, the authors predicted and found that North Americans are more likely than Western Europeans (British and Germans) to (a) exhibit focused (vs. holistic) attention, (b) experience emotions associated with independence (vs. interdependence), (c) associate happiness with personal achievement (vs. communal harmony), and (d) show an inflated symbolic self. In no cases were the 2 Western European groups significantly different from one another. All Western groups showed (e) an equally strong dispositional bias in attribution. Across all of the implicit indicators of independence, Japanese were substantially less independent (or more interdependent) than the three Western groups. An explicit self-belief measure of independence and interdependence showed an anomalous pattern. These data were interpreted to suggest that the contemporary American ethos has a significant root in both Western cultural heritage and a history of voluntary settlement. Further analysis offered unique support for the cultural task analysis.
Disciplines
Publication Date
2009
Citation Information
Shinobu Kitayama, Hyekyung Park, Timur Sevincer, Mayumi Karasawa, et al.. "A cultural task analysis of implicit independence: Comparing North America, Western Europe, and East Asia" Journal of Personality and Social Psychology Vol. 97 (2009)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/ayse_uskul/14/