Gender differences in self-construal: How generalizable are western findings?

David Watkins, Christopher Cheng, Elias Mpofu, Sola Olowu, Sunita Singh-Sengupta, Murari Regmi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)


The authors used the Twenty Statements Test in 2 studies to investigate gender and country differences in the spontaneous self-descriptions of 811 college students from Hong Kong, India, Nepal, Nigeria, and Zimbabwe and 136 secondary school students from Taiwan and Hong Kong. The authors performed statistical analysis and found no significant gender differences in the percentage of responses classified as belonging to the idiocentric self in either study. However, the authors found significant Country effects in both studies for responses classified as representing the idiocentric self and some aspects of the collective self, and the authors found significant Country × Gender effects involving all 4 categories of the idiocentric self and the collective self for the college students. These findings raise questions about the generalizability of Western findings that males are more likely to espouse an independent conception of self than females. However, as the authors predicted, females were more likely to use small group self-descriptions than their male peers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)501-519
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Social Psychology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Allocentric self
  • Collective self
  • Country
  • Gender
  • Idiocentric self
  • Small groups

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology


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