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Culture, Self, and Their Mutual Influences on Social Anxiety and Social Support


Culture, Self, and Their Mutual Influences on Social Anxiety and Social Support

Zhou, Biru (2014) Culture, Self, and Their Mutual Influences on Social Anxiety and Social Support. PhD thesis, Concordia University.

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Sociocultural contexts provide frameworks with which people attempt to make sense of the world. Different sociocultural contexts foster different views of the self and how the self is related to others (Markus & Kitayama, 1991, 2010). Self and sociocultural context are deeply interrelated, and have a joint mutual influences on both psychological processes and overt social beahviours. This dissertation presents two manuscripts that showcase different methodological and analytical approaches to the unpacking of cultural variations in social anxiety and social support processes.
Manuscript 1 presents two self-report based studies that examine the mediating effects of self-construals and intolerance of uncertainty for cultural variations on social
anxiety and the offensive-type of Taijin Kyofusho (OTKS). A two cultural group comparison (i.e., Euro-Canadians vs. Chinese migrants) in Study 1, and a three cultural
group comparison (i.e., Euro-Canadians vs. Chinese vs. Japanese) in Study 2 were used to analyze the same mediation model. Results showed that there are significant
differences among these different cultural groups on both social anxiety and OTKS, and that theses variations can be explained via different mediators. Both studies
demonstrated that there are both psychological universality and cultural variations for social anxiety and OTKS in different cultural contexts.
Manuscript 2 examined how social support experiences are influenced by friendship qualities, gender and cultural effects. Social support experiences can be best
understood within different levels of social complexity from Hinde (1987). This study combined the conceptual approach of Hinde with the analytical approach of the Actor-
Partner Interdependence Model (Kenny, Kashy, & Cook, 2006) to scrutinize both actor and partner effects during social support interactions among same-sex peers in two cultural contexts (i.e., Euro-Canadian vs. Chinese). Results indicated that friendship qualities predicted different support seeking (direct vs. indirect) and support provision (supportive vs. negative) styles. Cultural and gender variations also influenced support seeking and provision behaviours interpersonally and intrapersonally, after controlling for the nonindependence between the support seeker and the helper. These two manuscripts illustrated the endeavour to bridge theoretical, conceptual, and methodological frameworks in order to unpack the influences of culture and the self on psychological processes and social behaviours.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Psychology
Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Authors:Zhou, Biru
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:Ph. D.
Date:September 2014
Thesis Supervisor(s):Ryder, A. G.
ID Code:978969
Deposited By: BIRU ZHOU
Deposited On:26 Nov 2014 14:29
Last Modified:18 Jan 2018 17:48
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