Sex Differences in Self-Construal and in Depressive Symptoms: Predictors of Cross-National Variation
Sex differences in aspects of independent versus interdependent self-construal and depressive symptoms were surveyed among 5,320 students from 24 nations. Men were found to perceive themselves as more self-contained whereas women perceived themselves as more connected to others. No significant sex differences were found on two further dimensions of self-construal, or on a measure of depressive symptoms. Multilevel modeling was used to test the ability of a series of predictors derived from a social identity perspective and from evolutionary theory to moderate sex differences. Contrary to most prior studies of personality, sex differences in selfconstrual were larger in samples from nations scoring lower on the Gender Gap Index, and the Human Development Index. Sex differences were also greater in nations with higher pathogen prevalence, higher self-reported religiosity, and in nations with high reported avoidance of settings with strong norms. The findings are discussed in terms of the interrelatedness of selfconstruals and the cultural contexts in which they are elicited and the distinctiveness of student samples.
In this study, the authors pinpoint the similarities and differences between students at a Russian university and a Swedish university regarding the students’ value systems. What similarities and what differences are there between male Swedish students and male Russian students, and what similarities and what differences are there between the female students in the two countries? The authors’ interest was directed towards the gender differences between the two countries. A method employing three phases was developed for analyses of the value systems in the two countries. Students, who, as a category, often challenge existing value systems, were chosen as informants. Student samples from each country, varying in number from 63 to 100 informants, provided data in the three sub-studies. The results indicated that similar national concepts, when translated into English, exposed significant differences in their connotations, a phenomenon which is discussed in relation to implications for intercultural communication. In particular, the concepts of democracy and gender equality are highlighted. Differences and similarities related to gender and nationality constitute the bulk of the discussion. A major finding was that concepts describing close interpersonal relations, such as friendship and love, were cross-nationally rated higher than values more distant from the individual’s private world, such as democracy and equal rights.
This paper examines correlations between the genetic characteristics of human populations and their aggregate levels of tolerance and happiness. A metadata analysis of genetic polymorphisms supports the interpretation that a major cause of the systematic clustering of genetic characteristics may be climatic conditions linked with relatively high or low levels of parasite vulnerability. This led vulnerable populations to develop gene pools conducive to avoidance of strangers, while less-vulnerable populations developed gene pools linked with lower levels of avoidance. This, in turn, helped shape distinctive cultures and subsequent economic development. Survey evidence from 48 countries included in the World Values Survey suggests that a combination of cultural, economic and genetic factors has made some societies more tolerant of outsiders and more predisposed to accept gender equality than others. These relatively tolerant societies also tend to be happier, partly because tolerance creates a less stressful social environment. Though economic development tends to make all societies more tolerant and open to gender equality and even somewhat happier, these findings suggest that cross-national differences in how readily these changes are accepted, may reflect genetically-linked cultural differences.
In the article on the basis of the psycholinguistic experimental data obtained in 2009-2010 from Russian and Swedish students (the project on Swedish Institute grant) we consider internal features of several complex values (“Harmony”, “Freedom”, “Democracy”, “Tolerance” and “Patriotism”) and analyze their external systemic organization, taking into account both specificity of the two cultures and gender specifics. We argue that value concepts are hierarchically organized, forming different generalization levels from the simple to the more complex ones with intricate overlapping among different complex values within the system.
The distractive effects on attentional task performance in different paradigms are analyzed in this paper. I demonstrate how distractors may negatively affect (interference effect), positively (redundancy effect) or neutrally (null effect). Distractor effects described in literature are classified in accordance with their hypothetical source. The general rule of the theory is also introduced. It contains the formal prediction of the particular distractor effect, based on entropy and redundancy measures from the mathematical theory of communication (Shannon, 1948). Single- vs dual-process frameworks are considered for hypothetical mechanisms which underpin the distractor effects. Distractor profiles (DPs) are also introduced for the formalization and simple visualization of experimental data concerning the distractor effects. Typical shapes of DPs and their interpretations are discussed with examples from three frequently cited experiments. Finally, the paper introduces hierarchical hypothesis that states the level-fashion modulating interrelations between distractor effects of different classes.
This article describes the expierence of studying factors influencing the social well-being of educational migrants as mesured by means of a psychological well-being scale (A. Perrudet-Badoux, G.A. Mendelsohn, J.Chiche, 1988) previously adapted for Russian by M.V. Sokolova. A statistical analysis of the scale's reliability is performed. Trends in dynamics of subjective well-being are indentified on the basis the correlations analysis between the condbtbions of adaptation and its success rate, and potential mechanisms for developing subjective well-being among student migrants living in student hostels are described. Particular attention is paid to commuting as a factor of adaptation.