These traits vary from culture to culture. If we premise that all humans are hereditarily equal, why are people so unique from society to society? Dollard was a sociologist who had studied psychoanalysis and who collaborated with Neal Miller a psychologist trained in learning theory in an effort to apply classical learning theory to psychodynamic theory see Chapter 10. Meanwhile, submissiveness and caretaking have historically been held as ideal feminine traits. It is the most primal part of personality and drives people to fulfill their most basic needs and urges. But because the culture forces most people to be bound by certain rules then that child will that would allow him to appear superior to others and that are in the same time accepted by his culture. Thus, one must have some understanding of these factors for a given culture when attempting to interpret cross-cultural or intercultural research.
It focuses on learning to control bowel movements and maintain bladder control. A Final Challenge As important as it is to keep cultural factors in mind when studying personality, the unfortunate reality is that the major personality theories in psychology, as we recognize psychology today, have arisen within Western intellectual settings. Cultural relativity is an idea that recognizes the fact that different cultural patterns represent nothing else than different solutions to particular problems that are common to all mankind. They described distinctive characteristics of people in certain cultures and attributed these unique traits to the different methods of childrearing. All of these cultures influence us in one way or the other and it is good to understand that we all see the world through our cultural lenses. In the case of non-material culture, however, there is no such yardstick to measure with, and one cannot with definiteness say whether or not we have progressed in the fields of religious, governmental, administrative or artistic activities. Hope is the virtue that comes out of this stage, as the child learns to trust or mistrust his caretakers.
In 2005, the president of Harvard University suggested that one of the reasons there were so few women in math and science fields was that they lacked the intrinsic aptitude. To give you a simple example, when I was in graduate school, we had a student from Taiwan join our research group. Given such an interesting interaction between the fields of psychology, anthropology, and sociology over half a century ago, it seems surprising that psychology is only now emphasizing the value of focusing on cultural influences on personality development. Although they were often admired for their unique interests and ideas, the major emphasis in psychology was on the scientific method and data that had been obtained in carefully controlled situations, and then analyzed with similar, exacting precision. It drives individuals to consistently think, feel, and behave in specific ways; in essence, it is what makes each individual unique. As an alternative to race, some people use the term ethnicity, which identifies groups according to commonalities such as nationality, culture, or language. Gender is a distinctly cultural term, representing the behaviors or patterns of activity that a given culture or society expects from men and women.
Efforts to study cultures and societies alter the location of sociocultural phenomena within our own universe of personal development. Hurlock makes a study of American and French children in this context and finds that though the children of these two countries belong to what may be described as the common Western way of life, the American child tends to be self-dependent, while the French child shows in himself the characteristics of reliance upon parents. If there are not, then any analysis of the nature or causes of those alleged differences is meaningless. Thus, even someone who is considered a rebel, most likely exists within a range of rebellion that is possible within that particular culture. These genes are the real determiners of hereditary characteristics—which pass on from one generation to the other. Certain aspects of gender roles likely reflect some of the underlying biological differences between males and females.
This can be addressed, in part, through examining back translations of the test s being used. Sorokin points out that culture can have a dramatic influence on the biological substrates of personality. This libidinal energy fuels the three components that make up personality:. Cross-cultural research typically refers to either parallel studies being conducted in different cultures, or similar concepts being studied in different cultures. Even the twins are no exception to this. He had many theories that people thought were a little off or even completely wrong. Does the culture affect personality? The basic sources of personality development are heredity and environment.
Psychologists often want to use tests developed in their own language with people of a different culture who speak a different language. He begins by asking the question of whether there are differences in personality between different cultural groups. The basic strength in this stage is wisdom, and the ego outcome is integrity versus despair. For example, as we will see in Chapter 7, Erik Erikson did not feel confident in proposing his eight stages of development the psychosocial crises until he had confirmed his observations in two separate Native American tribes. Environment: Our environment is the nurturing aspect of our lives. Before i can tell you whether culture has any effect on personality or not i must first tell you how personality is developed. A culture, therefore, differs from another, and it can grow from one stage to another, just as the culture of modern man has grown from that of the Neanderthal man.
One of the most interesting points made by Linton is that individuals with complimentary personalities are also mutually adjusted. Ralph Linton, a renowned anthropologist with an interest in cultural influences on personality see Linton, 1945 , also edited a book entitled Most of the World: The Peoples of Africa, Latin America, and the East Today Linton, 1949. The differences in the cultural traits and patterns are not matters that should demand our whole attention; there are also similarities that run through human societies and cultures. Over time, these patterns strongly influence personal expectations, perceptions, values, and attitudes. Here are the layers of the hierarchy: Physiological: These are the most important needs that must be met. Although ethnicity and race may be of questionable value as cultural factors, there are two critically important issues that arise from them.
Over the years, various people have conducted research into personality development, and each has his or her own ideas regarding it. Whether they are nice, helpful, outgoing, or shy are just a few of the things that we assess as we evaluate the people around us. If I am upset about some new college policy, I might say very negative things about the administration of our college, even about particular administrators. During this stage the focus is on the genitals. In other words, because strict Freudian theorists, as well as behavioral and cognitive theorists, believed that their theories applied to all people equally, they typically chose not to address differences between people.
Their Japanese counterparts, in contrast, consider it important to get to know their business partners, and they are comfortable with hours of conversation about a variety of topics. For example, Thomas and Chess 1977 found that babies could be categorized into one of three temperaments: easy, difficult, or slow to warm up. Building on a two-stage process proposed by Piaget, Kohlberg expanded the theory to include six different stages. This difference between the rates at which material and non-material culture develop is called by Ogburn as the cultural lag. They are mostly ignored by parents and the society until they reach puberty. Perhaps most importantly, it is the ongoing interaction of all of these influences that continue to shape personality over time. What do we mean when we talk about personality development? In this procedure, one person translates the test, or survey, into the foreign language, and then a different person translates the foreign language test back into the original language.
The idea is that people focus on fulfilling their own potential and no longer worry so much about what others think. Moving even beyond old age, into death, there are many societies in which the dead remain in the minds of the community members, and deceased relatives and heroes are even worshipped. See the difference between needs and wants? Does the culture affect personality? American children tend to describe themselves in terms of personal attributes, values, and achievements, and they learn to be self-reliant, to compete with others, and to value their uniqueness. Genetics, of course, also determines how someone looks. Environmental factors also include such things as languages, religion, etc. In this layer, you will need security, employment, family, property, health, morality, etc.