Social Psychology of Culture: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Social Psychology of Culture

1st Edition

By Chi-Yue Chiu, Ying-yi Hong

Psychology Press

400 pages

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pub: 2006-07-27
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As the speed of globalization accelerates, world cultures are more closely connected to each other than ever before. But what exactly is culture? It seems to be involved in all psychological processes, but can its psychological consequences be studied scientifically? How can cultural differences be described without reifying culture and reinforcing cultural stereotypes? Culture and mind constitute each other, but how? Why do humans need culture? How did the evolution of the mind enable the development of human culture? How does participation in culture transform the mind, and how does the mind process and apply culture? How may culture become a resource for pursuing valued goals, and how does culture become part of the self? How do culture travelers navigate cultures and negotiate multiple cultural identities?

The authors of this volume offer a refreshing theoretical perspective and organize seemingly disparate research evidence into a coherent body of psychological knowledge. With its accessible language and lively narrative, this volume engages its readers in an intellectual journey through the fascinating research literatures in psychology, anthropology, and the cognate disciplines.

This book will make an ideal textbook for senior undergraduate and graduate courses on psychology and culture, cultural studies, cognitive anthropology, and intercultural communication.


'This superb account of the way culture and social psychology are interrelated uses a broad set of theoretical and applied perspectives. It is very much up-to-date, describing more recent experiments than even professional cultural psychologists are likely to know. Cultural psychology is a collaborative enterprise, and the inclusion of the biographies of the major researchers allows the reader to become, in a small way, a member of the team of researchers exploring the culture and social psychology link. Both professional psychologists and students will learn a great deal from it.' - Harry C. Triandis, Professor Emeritus, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA

'This is truly a unique book. Written in a manner that is engaging and accessible to a broad audience, Social Psychology of Culture effectively weaves together theory and concrete illustrations of cultural influences on thought and behavior. The result is a comprehensive review that simultaneously advances our understanding of culture, and of social psychology. Kudos to the authors for a remarkable piece of scholarship.' - Marilynn B. Brewer, Ohio State University, USA

'Though the basic orientation of this book is social psychological, the perspective from which the authors view cultural phenomena is unusually broad and integrative. I recommend this book to any psychologist who seeks entrée to this fascinating and burgeoning area of theory and research.' - Robert M. Krauss, Columbia University, USA

'This volume provides comprehensive coverage of fundamental issues and applications in a balanced and extremely readable manner. A definite must for any course on the social psychology of culture.' - Gün R. Semin, Free University Amsterdam, The Netherlands

About the Series

Principles of Social Psychology

Though the central aims of social psychology have remained the same since the inception of the field - the scientific study of the way individuals perceive, interact with and relate to others - our understandings of social psychological subject matter have changed enormously. The growth of the field during the past few decades has been remarkable.

Though the interest in traditional topics continues to thrive, social psychology has been transformed by its close partnerships with other domains of psychology, as well as its ties to outside disciplines such as law and the health sciences. Furthermore, whereas in the past decades European and American perspectives on social psychology had different emphases, there is now increasing integration of their perspectives as well as of additional ones originating from all parts of the globe (Australasia and Asia, for example). The internet and the ever-growing volume of international travel facilitate communication and foster the emergence of a "shared reality" among social psychologists worldwide.

Principles of Social Psychology is a new generation of social psychology textbooks, which aims to reflect these exciting developments. The basic commitment of the series is twofold: (1) to articulate the principles and explanatory mechanisms underlying the variety of social behavior; (2) to relate them to real-world phenomena and concerns. The emphasis of the series would be on broad, overarching principles and processes that unite and integrate large bodies of empirical research rather than on descriptive reviews of such research, whose exponential growth makes this an increasingly difficult enterprise.

While presenting fairly a variety of viewpoints, each textbook in the series will feature a coherent perspective of its own. This would be a broad, meta-perspective on the field in question, and not simply an individual theory. Though the author's conceptual vantage point may not coincide with each instructor's perspective, it will nonetheless afford the opportunity for a meaningful dialogue and encourage students to partake in the intellectual debate.

All books in the series will address relevant research conducted by researchers from around the world, and will incorporate the same set of organizational principles so that as a whole the series will provide a comprehensive and stimulating introduction to the diverse and fascinating field of social psychology.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PSYCHOLOGY / Social Psychology