Culture and Personality
Cultural psychologists have noted that some aspects of personality differ across cultural groups. For example, Americans and Asians have slightly different conceptions of self. American culture promotes a view of the self as independent. 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.
Many Asian cultures, such as those of Japan and China, promote a view of the self as interdependent. Children from these cultures tend to describe themselves in terms of which groups they belong to. They learn to rely on others, to be modest about achievements, and to fit into groups.
Researchers believe that culture influences aggressiveness in males. In places where there are plentiful resources and no serious threats to survival, such as Tahiti or Sudest Island near New Guinea, males are not socialized to be aggressive. Culture also influences altruism. Research shows that children tend to offer support or unselfish suggestions more frequently in cultures where they are expected to help with chores such as food preparation and caring for younger siblings.