- Western cultures are individualist they place importance on the individual.
- Individual achievement praised, dependence on others undesirable.
- Hence element of freedom of choice when forming relationships
- Non-western culture tend to be interdependent, work as a group.Work as tight unit
- Relationships formed are concerned with family or the group
Ting-Toomey (1986) found reciprocity in personal relationships voluntary but obligtatory in collectivist cultures. In Japanese culture gift-giving and reciprocity vital. Failure to do so is failure of moral duty.
- Due to great social mobility and geographical location western cultures have freedom to choose from greater pool of potential relationships
Non western cultures
- In non western cultures there's less choice of interaction due to less geographical and social mobility therefore other factors determine relationships e.g family or economic resources.
- Non western cultures view marriage based on romantic love as optimistic
Gupta and Singh (1982) assessd 50 married couples, half arranged marriage, half love marriages, how much liked or loved each other found love higher in first stage of love marriage yet decreases over time, vice versa.
Suggests that relationships base don romantic love are not always most fruitul.
- Cultural differences e.g traditions consistent with types of relationships found in different cultures
- Western cultures promote progress and view change as inevitable, hence favouring temporary relationships
- Non western cultures emphasise continuity, thus dominated by permanent relationships
- Length of relationships varies between cultures e.g In China divorce is shameful thus the divorce rate is less than 4% contrasted with 40-50% Marriages end in divorce in U.S.A.
- In west people rely heavily one partner thus place emphasis on finding the 'one', resulting in unstable, impermanent relationships.
- Brodbar-Nemzer (1968) found strong link between Jewish commitment and dissapproval of divorce.
Sample Size: Large sample of 4000.
Low generalisability: Jewish community. Cannot be generalised to wider population