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Home List of Titles Culture, language, and the self : personal-pronoun use and cultural conception of the self
Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1959.3/4892
- Culture, language, and the self : personal-pronoun use and cultural conception of the self
- Kashima, Emiko S.
- Culture was said to provide self-concepts (Triandis, 1972), a stable tendency in sampling different types of the self (Triandis, 1989), and a particular cognitive structure to reflect those experiences (Trafimow, Triandis, & Goto, 1991). Building on this research we considered that a cultural conception of the self be maintained through practices of the self in everyday interactions, and examined this idea by focusing on language use, and tendency to drop self and other referencing in particular. Our conversational data and analysis of pronoun use and values across 39 language-cultures provided converging evidence: pronoun drop was associated with more ambiguous self-other distinction, and with collectivism. How the self-practice of pronoun drop may develop and maintain a particular self-conception then? We approached this question by adopting a PDP approach. Our simulation supported that a network that learns sentence-like word sequence with pronoun drops developed relatively diffused representations of "self" and "other"; learning material with no pronoun drop led tighter clustering of "self" and "other" separately. The simulation thus supported pronoun drop to have implications for development of different self-conceptions. We took a step further to incorporate the idea that cultural self-conception is maintained collectively through interactions. Three interconnected networks simulating three social agents were trained with materials approximating different cultural patterns ("I-" vs. "We"-sentence prevalence). Supporting that self-conceptions are maintained collectively, cultural biases emerged from the network outputs. We advocate that future research on culture and self should explore seriously cognitive models that embody individual and collective practices.
- Publication type
- Conference paper
- Research centre
- Swinburne University of Technology. School of Social and Behavioural Sciences
- 26th Congress of the International Association for Cross-Cultural Psychology, Poland, 2000
- Publication year
- Peer reviewed