Cross-Cultural Studies on Gender, Emotion and Personality
David Matsumoto & Linda Juang
Gender, Emotion and Personality:
A Culture and Psychology Perspective
Based on: Matsumoto, D. & Juang, L. (2007). Culture and
Psychology (4th Ed.). Wadsworth.
Daisy Zheng & Dr. Hora Tjitra
Definition of Sex and Gender
Gender Behaviors or patterns of activities that a society or
physiological differences culture deems appropriate for men and women.
between males and
females. Gender Role Degree to which a person adopts the gender-
Sex Roles specific behaviors ascribed by his or her culture.
Behaviors expected of Gender Identity Degree to which a person has awareness
males and females in or recognition that he or she adopts a particular gender role.
relation to their
and reproduction. Gender Role Ideology Judgments about what gender
roles in a particular culture ought to be.
Degree of awareness Gender Stereotype Psychological or behavioral
and recognition of sex
and sex roles an characteristics typically associated with men and women.
individual may have.
As different societies live in different environments, survival requires that
they balance a number of factors. Thus, as different cultures must deal
with different external factors, it is only natural that gender differences
vary by culture.
Culture and Gender Stereotypes
Pancultural Universality in Psychological Attribution to Gender (Williams & Best, 1982)
Research Method Results
Adjective Check List (ACL) • Men are generally viewed as active, strong, critical, and adultlike, with psychological
needs such as dominance, autonomy, aggression, exhibition, achievement, and
ACL is a list of 300 adjectives.
endurance. While women are generally viewed as passive, weal, nurturing, and
Respondents are asked to decide adaptive, with psychological needs such as abasement, deference, succorance,
whether each adjective is considered affiliation, and heterosexuality.
more descriptive of a male or of a
female in their culture. • Men are associated more with the personality traits of conscientiousness,
Whether the subjects agreed with the extroversion, and openness. While women are associated with higher scores on the
assignment of an adjective to males or personality traits of agreeableness and neuroticism.
females is irrelevant.
Cross-Cultural Differences in Gender Stereotypes
The Japanese have more traditional gender role orientations than did the Germans. Japanese mothers are seen as more
controlling than fathers, but German mothers are less.
Perceiving gender differences in a stereotype fashion is rather persistent because we tend to be more attuned to information
that reinforce and supports our gender stereotypes.
Gender role stereotypes increase with age (children are more like to sex-type same-sex figures), cognitive development
(children’s understanding of gender and sex role preferences appear to be related), and the contribution of socializing
agents, such as media (the way the media have historically portrayed women parallels the way media have historically
portrayed people of color).
Culture, Gender Role Ideology and Self-
Result of Gender Role Ideologies
Research from Williams & Best (1990)
Hofstede’s Study (1980) about
Traditional Egalitarian Culture and Self-Concept
Women Men “Masculinity Japan, Austria,
” (MA) Venezuela, Italy
Nigeria, Netherlands, Tend to endorse items
The degree to and values thought to
Pakistan, India Germany, Finland be associated with
which a culture masculinity and male
Traditional scores Egalitarian will foster, gender roles in the
tend to describe scores reflect a encourage, or workplace.
gender roles that tendency toward
were consistent less maintain
with the differentiation differences
traditional or between males between males Denmark, Norway,
universal norms and females on and females. Netherland, Sweden
found in the the various Minimize differences
earlier research. psychological between sexes and
Exposure to western culture
Psychological Gender Differences across Cultures
Males are better at mathematical and spatial reasoning tasks, whereas females are better at
verbal comprehension tasks.
What factor influence which type of differences, and why.
Conformity and Obedience
Females are more conforming and obedient than males.
Links between cultural variables such as tightness and psychological constructs such as
conformity, and the degree to which gender differences on such constructs are fostered.
Males are more aggressive than females.
Exact mechanisms accounting for these differences, taking into account the complex
interplay among biology, culture, and psychology.
Career plans, self-presentations, dress, suicidal behavior, dream content, personal relationships,
self-esteem, conflict resolution, response styles, nonverbal behaviors, attitudes toward marriage
and sexual behaviors, religious involvement, personal entitlements, etc.
Can You Tell Their Feeling from Facial Expression?
Anger Fear Sadness Contempt
Disgust Happiness Surprise
Universality of Facial Expressions of Emotion
Cross-Cultural Differences in Display
e.g. Expression of Personal Emotions in Self-Ingroup
and Self-Outgroup Relationships in Individualistic and
Seven response alternatives:
•Express the feeling with no modification
•Deamplify or reduce the expression
•Amplify or exaggerate the expression
•Mask or control your feelings bu showing something else
•Qualify your expression with a smile
•Neutralize your expression
Universal, Pancultural and Culturally Specific
Aspects of Perception of Emotion
• Facial expressions recognition
• Relative intensity ratings Cross-Cultural Differences
• Association between perceived • Emotion recognition rates
expression intensity and
influences about subjective • Sociocultural dimensions account
experience for differences in the perception of
• Second mode of response in
emotion recognition • Attributions of expression intensity
• Influences about emotional
experiences underlying facial
experiences of emotion
• Attributions of personality based
Cultural Similarities and Differences in Emotion
Experiences, Appraisal and Concept
Emotion Experiences Emotion Appraisal Emotion Concept
People share the same Happiness Most cultures have a
basic emotion concept for emotion.
All cultures categorize
Anger their world of emotion.
Cultural influence is not
as large as the Sadness Every culture has the
seemingly innate location of emotion.
differences among the Disgust Emotion has a role or
emotions themselves. meaning in people’s life.
Shame and guilt
“Culture Construction of Culture differ in Different definition.
Emotion” Model: appraisal dimensions
Different realities and that require judgments Different categorization or
ideals of different cultures relative to cultural of labeling.
produce different social norms such as Different locations.
psychological needs and
goals, which produce fairness, morality and
other more “complex” Different meaning of
differences in habitual
emotional tendencies. appraisal dimensions. emotions to people and to
An Example of Culture Influences on Self-Perception
Independent construal of self Interdependent construal of self
Individuals focus on Individuals focus on their
Achievement Motivation interdependent status with
attributes – individual Self-Enhancement other people and strive to meet
ability, intelligence, or even create duties,
personality traits, goals, or obligations, and social
Happiness responsibilities. The most salient
preferences – expressing
them in public and verifying Indigenous Emotion aspect of conscious experience
and confirming them in is intersubjective, rooted in
Social Connotation of
private social comparison. Emotion finely tuned interpersonal
Cross-Cultural Approaches and Results of
Study of Personality
Psychological Anthropology Cross-Cultural Psychology
• Dominated in the first half of the 20th century. • Dominated in the second half of the 20th century.
• Interested in human psychology within the • Two or more cultures are treated as independent
anthropological discipline. variables, and are compared on some personality traits
• Most important contribution: View of personality as
• Most important contribution: See culture and
culturally specific, formed by the unique forces each personality as a mutually constituted system in which
culture deals with in its milieu. each creates and maintains the other.
Locus of Control
How much control people believe they have over their behavior and their relationship with their environment and with others.
Higher Internal Locus of Control Higher External Locus of Control
European Americans Asians (Chinese & particularly Japanese)
Higher Self-Enhancing Level Lower Self-Enhancing Level
Construct of self-esteem and the related construct of self-worth.
Culture and Five Factor Model of
✦ Cultures may differ in mean levels of personality, however, more
recent research suggest that the Five Factor Model – a
constellation of personality traits comprising Neuroticism,
Extroversion, Openness, Conscientiousness, and
Agreeableness -- may be universal to all humans.
✦ Research on indigenous approaches to personality, however,
have demonstrated culturally specific aspects of personality that
cannot be accounted for by the FFM.
We have suggested that these two seemingly opposing
viewpoints need not be seen as mutually exclusive; rather, it may
be more beneficial to view them as different, coexisting
aspects of personality.
The challenge for future research is to capture this coexistence,
examining the relative degree of contribution of biological and
cultural factors in the development and organization of
Any comments & questions
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@ Tjitra, 2010