AQA A2 Psychology Unit 3 Relationships: The Nature of Relationships In Different Cultures Notes

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A2 Psychology Unit 3 Relationships: The Nature of Relationships in Different Cultures Notes

What You Need To Know:

·         The nature of relationships in different cultures

Relationships in Western cultures tend to be individualistic, voluntary and temporary while those in non-Western cultures tend to be collectivist, involuntary and permanent (Moghaddam et al, 1993). Research has consistently found that these cultures differ greatly in terms of mate selection.

Love and Marriage:

·         Janovick (1995) identifies aspects of romantic love in over 88% of cultures studied: however, what constitutes romantic love is culturally specific and is not necessarily a condition of marriage.

·         What is ideal in a spouse in one culture may not be in another. DePaulo and Morros (2005) say that in American relationships the social role of the partner may take in multiple roles, including, adviser, best-friend and lover.

·         Marriage is not universal. For the Na people of the Himalayas, marriage does not exist. Brothers and sisters live together and care for the sisters children together. Men visit other women at night, since incest is prohibited (Tapp, 2002).

Collectivist cultures - Refers to a culture in which the importance is placed on the group as a whole, not the individual. Examples include Japan and China.

·         49% would consider marrying a person they were not in love with if they had everything else they desired. (LeVine et al, 1993)

·         Arranged marriages often organised by families on the basis of alliances and economic considerations.

·         Husbands and wives in arranged Indian marriages were `satisfied` with their choices. (Yelsma and Arthappily, 1988)

·         Martial satisfaction in Indian arranged marriages was similar to US free-choice ones, but love was a less important factor in marriage decision. (Myers et al, 2005).

·         Finances and shared values most important to Indian and


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