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Cross-Cultural Psychology: Critical Thinking and Contemporary Applications, 5th Edition

By Eric B. Shiraev, David A. Levy

Published by Taylor and Francis

Published Date: Jul 5, 2012

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Provides a comprehensive overview with focus on critical thinking.


The fifth edition continues a focus on applying critical thinking framework in examining, analyzing, and evaluating psychological data. With significant rewriting, new topics, and updated references, this text keeps pace with the rapidly changing conditions of modern times. The dynamic team brings a unique set of experiences and perceptions in writing this book


Learning Goals

Upon completing this book, readers should be able to:

  • Better understand the field of cross-cultural psychology
  • Understand contemporary theories and research in cross-cultural psychology
  • Use critical thinking to examine, analyze, and evaluate the field of cross-cultural psychology
  • Assist current and future practitioners from a wide variety of fields and services


New to this Edition

  • Current cross-cultural research including ethnic and religious identity, psychological effects of globalization, spirituality, cross-cultural communication, evolutionary anthropology.
  • A broader selection of applied problems such as avoiding stereotypes and psychodiagnostic biases, reducing mistakes in facial recognition, improving effectiveness of classroom learning, and many others.
  • A greater interdisciplinary perspective, using research from contemporary psychology, as well as neurophysiology, genetics, anthropology, sociology, and micro-economics.
  • An expanded companion website, which provides additional information for instructors and students.
  • More than 130 new reference sources and new research data related to a diverse array of ethnic groups.
  • A new and expanded test bank for instructors, which includes a comprehensive selection of questions for every chapter and ready-to-use-quizzes.


  • A critical thinking framework, including "Critical Thinking" boxes and tables, provide practice in developing learning skills.
  • More than thirty high-interest activities and exercises provide students ample opportunity for active learning and enhanced comprehension.
  • "A Case in Point" sections review and illustrate controversial issues, display cases and research findings, and introduce various opinions about human behavior in different cultural contexts.
  • "Cross-Cultural Sensitivity" boxes underscore the importance of empathy in interpersonal communication.
  • Relevant quotations from a wide range of sources provide divergent points of view, pique readers' interest, and inspire critical thinking.

Table of Contents

Found in this Section:

1. Brief Table of Contents

2. Full Table of Contents




Chapter 1 Understanding Cross-Cultural Psychology

Chapter 2 Methodology of Cross-Cultural Research

Chapter 3 Critical Thinking in Cross-Cultural Psychology

Chapter 4 Cognition: Sensation, Perception, and States of Consciousness 

Chapter 5 Intelligence

Chapter 6 Emotion

Chapter 7 Motivation and Behavior

Chapter 8 Human Development and Socialization

Chapter 9 Psychological Disorders

Chapter 10 Social Perception and Social Cognition

Chapter 11 Social Interaction

Chapter 12 Applied Cross-Cultural Psychology: Some Highlights




Chapter 1: Understanding Cross-Cultural Psychology

What Is Cross-Cultural Psychology? 

Basic Definitions 

Cultural Traditionalism 

Empirical Examination of Culture 

Collectivism and Individualism: Further Research 

Cultural Syndromes 

Evolutionary Approach

Sociological Approach 

Ecocultural Approach 

The Cultural Mixtures Approach

The Integrative Approach: A Summary 

Indigenous Psychology



A Brief History of the Field 


Chapter 2: Methodology of Cross-Cultural Research

Goals of Cross-Cultural Research 

Quantitative Research in Cross-Cultural Psychology 

Quantitative Approach: Measurement Scales 

Quantitative Approach: Looking for Links and Differences 

Qualitative Approach in Cross-Cultural Psychology 

Major Steps for Preparation of a Cross-Cultural Study 

Sample Selection 

Observation in Cross-Cultural Psychology

Survey Methods 

Experimental Studies 


Focus-Group Methodology 

Meta-Analysis: Research of Research 

A Hidden Obstacle of Cross-Cultural Studies: Test Translation 

Comparing Two Phenomena: Some Important Principles 

On Similarities and Differences: Some Critical Thinking Applications 

Cultural Dichotomies 

Avoiding Bias of Generalizations 

Know More about Cultures You Examine 


Chapter 3: Critical Thinking in Cross-Cultural Psychology

The Evaluative Bias of Language: To Describe Is to Prescribe 

Differentiating Dichotomous Variables and Continuous Variables: Black and White, or Shades of Gray? 

The Similarity–Uniqueness Paradox: All Phenomena Are Both Similar and Different 

The Barnum Effect: "One-Size-Fits-All" Descriptions 

The Assimilation Bias: Viewing the World through Schema-Colored Glasses 

The Representativeness Bias: Fits and Misfits of Categorization 

The Availability Bias: The Persuasive Power of Vivid Events 

The Fundamental Attribution Error: Underestimating the Impact of External Influences 

The Self-Fulfilling Prophecy: When Expectations Create Reality 

Correlation Does Not Prove Causation: Confusing "What" with "Why" 

Bidirectional Causation and Multiple Causation: Causal Loops and Compound Pathways 

The Naturalistic Fallacy: Blurring the Line between "Is" and "Should" 

The Belief Perseverance Effect: "Don’t Confuse Me with the Facts!" 

Conclusions: "To Metathink or Not to Metathink?" 


Chapter 4: Cognition: Sensation, Perception, and States of Consciousness

Sensation and Perception: Basic Principles 

How Culture Influences What We Perceive  106

How People Perceive Pictures

Perception of Depth 

Are People Equally Misled by Visual Illusions? 

Some Cultural Patterns of Drawing

Perception of Color 

Other Senses

Perception of Time 

Perception of the Beautiful 

Perception of Music 

Consciousness and Culture 

Sleep and Cultural Significance of Dreams 

Beyond Altered States of Consciousness


Chapter 5: Intelligence

Defining Intelligence 

Ethnic Differences in IQ Scores 

Explaining Group Differences in Test Scores: Intelligence and Intelligent Behavior 

Do Biological Factors Contribute to Intelligence? 

Incompatibility of Tests: Cultural Biases 

A Word about "Cultural Literacy" 

Environment and Intelligence 

Socioeconomic Factors 

The Family Factor 

"Natural Selection" and IQ Scores 

Cultural Values of Cognition 

General Cognition: What Is "Underneath" Intelligence? 

Cognitive Skills, School Grades, and Educational Systems 

Culture, Tests, and Motivation 

IQ, Culture, and Social Justice 

And in the End, Moral Values 


Chapter 6: Emotion

When We Laugh We Are Happy: Similarities of Emotional Experience 

You Cannot Explain Pain if You Have Never Been Hurt: Differences in Emotional Experience 

Emotions: Different or Universal? 

Physiological Arousal 

The Meaning of Preceding Events 

Emotion as an Evaluation 

We Are Expected to Feel in a Particular Way 

How People Assess Emotional Experience  1

When Emotions Signal a Challenge: Cross-Cultural Research on Stress and Anxiety 

Expression of Emotion 

When Emotion Hurts: Cross-Cultural Studies of Anger 

Emotion and Inclination to Act 

Emotion and Judgment 


Chapter 7: Motivation and Behavior

A Glance into Evolution 

Social Science: See the Society First 

Drive and Arousal: Two Universal Mechanisms of Motivation 

The Power of the Unconscious: Psychoanalysis 

Humanistic Theories 

Learning and Motivation

A Carrot and a Beef Tongue: Hunger and Food Preference 

When Hunger Causes Distress: Eating Disorders 

Victory and Harmony: Achievement Motivation 

Aggressive Motivation and Violence 

Culture and Sexuality 

Sex and Sexuality: Some Cross-Cultural Similarities 


Chapter 8: Human Development and Socialization

Development and Socialization 

Quality of Life and the Child’s Development 

Norms, Customs, and Child Care 

Parental Values and Expectations 

Erikson’s Stages of Psychosocial Development 

Piaget’s Stages of Cognitive Development 

Stages of Moral Development According to Kohlberg 

Developmental Stages 

Life before Birth: Prenatal Period 

First Steps: Infancy 

Discovering the World: Childhood 

Major Rehearsal: Adolescence 


Late Adulthood 


Chapter 9: Psychological Disorders

American Background: DSM-IV 

Two Views on Culture and Psychopathology 

Culture-Bound Syndromes 

Anxiety Disorders 

Depressive Disorders 


Culture and Suicide 

Personality Disorders 

Is Substance Abuse Culturally Bound? 

Psychodiagnostic Biases 


Culture Match? 


Chapter 10: Social Perception and Social Cognition


Western and Non-Western Values 

Striving for Consistency: The Cognitive Balance Theory 

Avoiding Inconsistency: Cognitive Dissonance 

Psychological Dogmatism 

Social Attribution 

Attribution as Locus of Control 

Attribution of Success and Failure 


Do Social Norms Affect the Way We See Our Own Body? 

Duty and Fairness in Individualist and Collectivist Cultures 

Stereotypes and the Power of Generalizations 

On "National Character"


Chapter 11: Social Interaction

Universal Interaction 

Direct Contacts and Body Language


Is Conformity Universal across Cultures? 

Following Orders 

Social Influence 

Feeling Good about Some Views 

Is Social Loafing Universal? 

Cooperation and Competition 



Chapter 12: Applied Cross-Cultural Psychology: Some Highlights


Spirituality, Science, and Health

Business Decisions 

Working with Immigrants 


Culture, Behavior, and the Law 

Human Rights 

Working and Serving Abroad 

Religion: A Campus Context