Individualism-Collectivism, Gender and the Self-Concept: A Nine Culture Investigation
D. Watkins, J. Adair, A. Akande, A. Gerong, D. McInerney, D. Sunar, S. Watson, Q.F. Wen & H. Wondimu
The Twenty Statements Test (TST) was used to investigate culture and gender differences in the self-conceptions of 1580 university students from 4 individualist and 5 collectivist cultures. Considerable variability was found within both individualist and collectivist groups as were strong culture by gender interactions. Moreover, no support was found for the hypotheses that the individualist participants would provide more Idiocentric and Evaluative but fewer Large Group collectivist responses. The hypothesis that females would provide fewer Idiocentric but more Large Group, Small Group, and Allocentric self-descriptions was supported only for the individualist cultures. The results thus question both the contention that gender differences in self-conceptions are consistent across cultures and the value of the Individualism-Collectivism dimension as an explanation of cultural differences in self-conceptions. The possibility that a finer grained analysis of the Idiocentric category may lead to support for such an explanation is something that needs to be taken seriously in future research, however.

Key words: self-concept, individualism, collectivism, gender