Chapter 21: The Relation between Gender and Cultural Orientation and its Implications for Advertising
Ashok K. Lalwani and Sharon Shavitt* INTRODUCTION Research points to gender differences in individualism and collectivism (e.g., Gilligan, 1982; Kashima et al. 1995; Maccoby, 1990; Singelis, 1994). At the broadest level, women appear to be less individualistic and more collectivistic than do men (Cross & Madson, 1997; Hofstede, 2001; Markus & Kitayama, 1991; Triandis, 1995). For instance, women are more willing and able to care for others (Gilligan, 1982), are more aware of and sensitive to others’ needs (Markus & Kitayama, 1991), are more likely to provide social support to others (Wellman, 1992; Wethington, McLeod & Kessler, 1987), view others as more sociable (Marcus & Lehman, 2002) and describe themselves in terms of relatedness to others (Rosenberg, 1989; also see Cramer, 2000), all of which are hallmarks of collectivism. In contrast, men are more likely to focus on themselves than on others (Clancy & Dollinger, 1993), to endorse competitive goals (Gaeddert & Facteau, 1990), and to describe themselves as separate from others (Lyons, 1983), which are characteristics of individualism. These types of gender difference have often been discussed in terms of culturally relevant self-construals. The independent self construal is associated with uniqueness, self-reliance, achievement, and separateness – characteristics that parallel an individualistic cultural orientation; whereas the interdependent self is associated with connectedness, and a focus on social context and relationships – characteristics that parallel a collectivistic cultural orientation (Markus & Kitayama, 1991; Singelis, 1994). Thus, Cross and Madson (1997) noted that gender differences in human cognition, motivation, emotion, and social life may be traced to the distinct independent and interdependent...
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