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How culture shapes thought
Lawrence T. White Ph.D.
In the U.S., about 20 people are abused by an intimate partner every minute. But how do those numbers compare with rates of domestic violence in other countries?
Are nonconscious prejudices indelible attitudes that predict discriminatory behavior? Or are they fleeting momentary patterns?
Anecdotes abound, but do people in different cultures actually have different preferred interpersonal distances? A study of nearly 5,000 people in 42 nations offers answers.
Do you and your family eat from a common plate? Or is each person's meal on a separate plate? A new study finds a surprising link between how we eat and when we collaborate.
A new study identifies factors that may predict how well people adjust to living in a new country—and which countries are easier to adjust to.
A new study examines the discrepancy between young people's cognitive maturity and emotional maturity in 11 nations.
At what age does someone become psychologically "adult"? Developmental science offers guidelines to courts about when adolescents are "adult-like"—and when they are not.
By forgoing traditional markers of adulthood, like driving, having a job, and getting married, young people can put off "adulting" for a few more years.
Recent studies of personality have identified a general factor related to social effectiveness. Can the same factor be observed in forager-farmers living in the Bolivian Amazon?
Has a cross-cultural encounter ever left you feeling confused, angry, and embarrassed? A few simple steps can help you successfully navigate "the unfamiliar" when traveling abroad.
Effective therapies everywhere are surprisingly similar. The specific techniques look different on the surface, but at their root, they draw upon the same fundamental principles.
New research finds that, compared to students in the United States, members of the seminomadic Himba tribe in rural Namibia are less blind to alternative solutions to problems.
Milgram demonstrated that most Americans will obey an authority figure who instructs them to shock another person. Are people in other countries even more likely to be obedient?
In an ideal world, we'd all choose to be maximally happy, healthy, and free. Right? Not according to a new study by an international team of researchers.
Students and workers from China sometimes choose an Anglo name when they come to the U.S. Do they experience less discrimination as a result? Two controlled studies say yes.
Social psychologists have replicated Asch's original conformity study in many different countries. Do people in other countries conform more or less than Americans?
A study found that, on a test of immediate recall, older women fared better than older men in Sweden and the US, but worse in Ghana and India. Why?
New studies find that cultural values appear to play no role in the generation of ideas, but an important role in the development of creative products.
A new study investigates a recurring question: Do interculturally competent people go abroad, or does going abroad increase one's intercultural competence?
A new subfield aims to construct "a psychology of place" by identifying and explaining the clustering of psychological phenomena in particular locales. Are they onto something?
When Chinese students come to the States, they sometimes use an Anglo name. Does having an Anglo name smooth social interactions? Or is it a loss of identity?
Psychology's debunker-in-chief critiques studies of microaggressions and finds them lacking, both conceptually and methodologically.
Studies show that Americans attend more to the bottom half of the face when judging a person's emotion, but Japanese attend more to the top half. Why the difference?
When people use a foreign language, they’re more likely to make a utilitarian choice—the greatest good for the greatest number—but the reasons why were unclear until now.
Everybody knows Italians have smaller “personal bubbles” than Americans, right? Well, maybe not. A new study examines interpersonal distances in 42 countries.
Researchers have known for years that happy and sad facial expressions are easily recognized by people around the world. Is the same true for happy and sad emoticons?
Fewer people than ever before say they are racially prejudiced, yet racial disparities persist. Is implicit bias a viable scientific explanation?
State-level differences in making and enforcing rules can help us understand why illicit drug use is lower—and levels of cautiousness are higher—in the South than in the West.
Why are some European countries more accepting of gays and lesbians? The answer may be found in newly-discovered national differences in empathic concern.
By reframing arguments in the moral language of your opponents, you can induce them to step away from their original position and move closer to yours.
Lawrence T. White, Ph.D., is a professor of psychology at Beloit College.