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Culture and Social Behavior: Cross-Cultural Social Psychology. Interpersonal Communication. Context vs. Content Cultural Orientation Context of communication: level and tone of voice; looking or not looking into the eyes (contact); distance between bodies; posture and body orientation;

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Interpersonal communication
Interpersonal Communication Psychology

Context vs. Content Cultural Orientation

  • Context of communication:

    • level and tone of voice;

    • looking or not looking into the eyes (contact);

    • distance between bodies;

    • posture and body orientation;

    • extent of body touching, including what parts of the body are being touched.

Culture and communication
Culture and Communication Psychology

  • Context cultures - societies that are homogeneous, relatively simple, and where people have to maintain good long-term relationships with others.

  • Content culture – everything is spelled out (said) clearly and explicitly. Nothing is left open to interpretation.

Social behavior patterns
Social Behavior Patterns Psychology

Work by Fiske revealed four types of social behavior patterns across cultures.

1. Community Sharing:

  • People know each other well;

  • family life is the closet metaphor;

  • what is mine is yours, intimacy, oneness, cooperation and self-sacrifice are typical behaviors.

Social behavior patterns cont
Social Behavior Patterns (cont.) Psychology

2. Authority Ranking:

  • Obedience, admiration, and giving and following orders without questioning are typical behaviors.

  • The relationship between a general and a soldier is the closest metaphor.

Social behavior patterns cont1
Social Behavior Patterns (cont.) Psychology

3. Equality Matching:

  • Social interaction between totally equal friends is the best metaphor.

  • Typical behaviors – taking turns, dividing things evenly, one person, one vote, etc.

Social behavior patterns cont2
Social Behavior Patterns (cont.) Psychology

4. Market Pricing:

  • Social relationships based on a cost-benefit analysis

  • “I’ll be your friend if it pays to do so”

Collectivism vs individualism
Collectivism vs. Individualism Psychology

  • As we have said again and again in this class, this continuum provides a parsimonious yet highly predictive culturally relevant construct for understanding all sorts of behavior patterns across cultures.

Perception and attractiveness
Perception and Attractiveness Psychology

  • Attractiveness

    • Cultural differences in the definition of attractiveness can influence the formation of impressions.

      • i.e. in Japan, attractiveness was correlated with large eyes, small mouths, and small chins. However, in Korea-large eyes, small and high noses, and thin and small faces define attractiveness.

Perception and attractiveness cont
Perception and Attractiveness (cont.) Psychology

  • Person Perception

    • Recognition of Faces

      • People tend to recognize others of their own perceived race more accurately.

Love and intimacy
Love and Intimacy Psychology

  • What attracts people to selecting a mate?

    • Early 1950 studies indicated proximity

    • Recent studies indicate physical attractiveness

      • Matching Hypothesis-people of equal physical characteristics are likely to select each other.

      • Similarity Hypothesis-people similar in age, race, religion, social class, education, intelligence, attitudes, and physical attractiveness form intimate relationships.

      • Reciprocity hypothesis-people tend to like others who like them.

Love and intimacy cont
Love and Intimacy (cont.) Psychology

  • Hatfield and Berscheid’s Theory of Love

    • Passionate Love - absorption of another that includes sexual feelings and intense emotion.

    • Companionate Love - warm, trusting, and tolerant affection for another whose life is intertwined with yours.

  • Sternberg’s Theory

    • Seven different forms of love depending on the presence or absence of passionate love, intimacy, or commitment.

Love and intimacy cont1
Love and Intimacy (cont.) Psychology

  • Differences Across Cultures

    • Romantic love valued more in America and Germany than in Japan (Simmons et al., 1986)

    • Europeans value love more than South Africans and Indians, the South Africans place higher value on equality and peace (Furnham, 1984)

Cross cultural similarities buss studies 1989 and 1994
Cross Cultural Similarities Psychology: Buss studies (1989 and 1994)

- More than 10,000 respondents in 37 different cultures completed 2 questionnaires (factors in choosing a mate and preferences concerning potential mates)

- In 36 of 37 cultures, females rated financial prospects as more important than did males.

- In all 37, males preferred younger mates and females preferred older mates.

- In 34, males rated good looks as more important

- In 23, males rated chastity as more important

Attributions for social behavior
Attributions for Social Behavior Psychology

  • Casual Attributions are the inferences people make about the causes of events regarding and their own and others’ behaviors.

  • Traditional American Attributions

    • Kelley’s Covariation Model - people attribute behavior to causes that are present when the behavior occurs and absent when the behavior does not.

Attributions cont
Attributions (cont.) Psychology

  • People consider 3 types of information when making attributions:

    • Consistency – is a person’s behavior consistent across situation or is it situation specific?

    • Distinctiveness – is a person’s behavior unique to the specific target?

    • Consensus – would other persons faced with the same situation behave is a similar manner?

Attributions cont1
Attributions (cont.) Psychology

  • Weiner’s Theory of Stability

    • Describes four types of attributions for success and failure: Stable and Unstable, internal and external

    • I.e. if didn’t get a job you could attribute it to:

    • 1) stable internal factors (lack of ability),

    • 2) stable external factors (too much competition),

    • 3) unstable internal factors (lack of effort), or

    • 4) unstable external factors (bad luck).

Attributions cont2
Attributions (cont.) Psychology

  • Fundamental Attribution Error - a tendency to attribute negative behavior outcome in others to internal factors (lack of ability) and to attribute negative outcomes in ourselves to external factors (unfair test).

  • Self Serving Bias - a tendency to attribute our own successes to personal factors and our failures to situational factors.

  • Defensive Attributions – a tendency to blame victims for their misfortune.

Cross cultural extensions of causal attribution theories and research
Cross-Cultural Extensions of Causal Attribution Theories and Research

  • This is an area where the limitations of American and Western European Psychology have been extremely apparent.

  • Cultural differences abound.

  • In fact, most of these theories have failed the universalism test.

Aggression Research

  • Any act or behavior that hurts another person, either physically or psychologically.

  • Cross-Cultural Differences

    • Robbins et al (1972) - countries in hotter climates are associated with higher murder rates.

    • Terav et al (1998) studied justifications for aggression

      • Estonians chose instrumental justifications (means to an end)

      • Finish reported that aggression was fun.

Aggression cont
Aggression (cont.) Research

  • Bond et al (1985) studied aggressive insults and criticisms

    • Aggressive behaviors was more acceptable in relationships where status and power were unequal for Chinese participants than for Americans.

  • Cross Cultural Similarities

    • Across cultures, overt physical and verbal aggression is more prevalent among boys than girls (Tomada et al.)

    • Acceptance of various forms of aggression are similar across cultures from Spain, Finland, Poland, South Africa, US, Japan, and Iran (Ramirez et al, 2001)

  • Conformity and compliance
    Conformity and Compliance Research

    • Conformity - yielding to real or imagined social pressure.

    • Compliance - yielding to social pressure in one’s public behavior, even if one’s private beliefs may not have changed.

    • Obedience - when people follow direct commands.

    • Cooperation - ability to work together toward a common goal.

    Conformity and compliance cont
    Conformity and Compliance (cont.) Research

    • Cross-Cultural Research

      • American bias-negative feelings (Asians value conformity)

      • Research on child rearing-indicates that Asians and Puerto Ricans were found to value conformity and obedience

      • Garza et. al. Studies