Notes on Intercultural Communication

Archive for the ‘Surveys’ Category

Genetics, Cultures and Body Odor

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Body Odor / ABCC11

Introduction

There are two kinds of sweat glands: eccrine sweat glands, which are found throughout the skin, and apocrine sweat glands, which are found in the armpits and groin. Eccrine sweat glands produce sweat that is mostly water and salt, and it does not contribute very much to body odor. Apocrine sweat contains proteins and lipids; when bacteria on the skin metabolize apocrine sweat, they produce body odor. The earwax glands (ceruminous glands) are a form of apocrine gland. (…) Some people have earwax that is wet, sticky and yellow or brown; other people’s earwax is dry, crumbly and grayish. Variation at a single gene determines which kind of earwax you have; the allele for wet earwax is dominant over the allele for dry earwax. The allele for dry earwax appears to have originated by mutation in northeastern Asia about 2,000 generations ago, then spread outwards because it was favored by natural selection. It is very common in eastern Asia, becomes much less common towards Europe, and is rare in Africa. Earwax type is not used very often to illustrate basic genetics, but unlike most human characters that are used (tongue rolling, attached earlobes, etc.), it really is controlled by a single gene with two alleles. . (…)

MYTHS OF HUMAN GENETICS by JOHN H. MCDONALD

Read full text online here or download pdf there

(retrieved 20.01.2013 at http://www.google.de/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=myths%20of%20human%20genetics&source=web&cd=14&cad=rja&ved=0CEcQFjADOAo&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.bio-logisch-nrw.de%2FMyths_of_Human_Genetics__Tongue_Rolling.pdf&ei=wib8UOezFMnYtAaFuYDQAg&usg=AFQjCNFEZd0CAl1L9hrf5_JZmjyAs)

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Apocrine Gland Secretion and Body Odor

(…) Martin et al. (2010) performed chemical analysis of axillary sweat samples from 25 individuals with different ABCC11 538G-A genotypes, including 18 Asian participants (11 AA homozygotes, 5 AG heterozygotes, and 2 GG homozygotes) and 7 Caucasian participants (2 AG heterozygotes and 5 GG homozygotes). Levels of 3 glutamine conjugates that are precursors for key body odorants were below detection limits in all participants with the AA genotype but were present in all AG and GG individuals, indicating that ABCC11 is essential for secretion of amino-acid conjugates of relevant axillary odors.

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Mapping of Apocrine Gland Secretion

By a functional assay, Yoshiura et al. (2006) determined that cells with allele A showed a lower excretory activity for cGMP than those with allele G. The allele A frequency showed a north-south and east-west downward geographic gradient; worldwide, it was highest in Chinese and Koreans, and a common dry-type haplotype was retained among various ethnic populations. These results suggested that the allele A arose in northeast Asia and thereafter spread through the world. The 538G-A SNP was the first example of DNA polymorphism determining a visible genetic trait.(…)

Read the full text online here or download pdf there.

(both retrieved 21.02.2015 at http://www.omim.org/entry/117800)

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World Overview ABCC11

site an frequency of allels A27 of ABCC11 among different ethnic populations

Read the document online here or download full pdf there.

(retrieved 20.01.2013 at http://www.google.de/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=das%20ohrenschmalz%20als%20rassenmerkmal%20und%20der%20rassengeruch&source=web&cd=11&ved=0CDAQFjAAOAo&url=http%3A%2F%2Fge.tt%2Fapi%2F1%2Ffiles%2F50GjGkI%2F0%2Fblob%3Fdownload&ei=FK77ULKmLo_otQaVvoCgBg&usg=AFQjCNEG–tL)

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Additional Material

Human Olfactory Communication

Abstact:

Nonhuman animals communicate their emotional states through changes in body odor. The study reported here suggests that this may be the same for humans. (…) The finding suggests that there is information in human body odors indicative of emotional state. This finding introduces new complexity in how humans perceive and interact. (…)

Human Olfactory Communication of Emotion by Chen D. and Haviland-Jones J.

(retrieved 21.05.2015 at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11153847)

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Read the full research as pdf online here or here.

(retrieved 21.05.2015 at http://www.google.de/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=7&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0CFYQFjAG&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.rci.rutgers.edu%2F~baljones%2FHuman%2520Olfactory.pdf&ei=FrJdVeCFH8yVsgHs5oCgBg&usg=AFQjCNEZZU3iIyp2aNjbNP3SilgIbEpKqg&bvm=bv.93756505,d.bGg)

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(Posted 21.05.2015)

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A Geography of Time

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Robert Levine – A Geography of Time

The Temporal Misadventures of a Social Psychologist, or How Every Culture Keeps Time Just a Little Bit Differently

(…) As Miles Davis said, “Time isn’t the main thing. It’s the only thing.” How we construct and use our time, in the end, defines the texture and quality of our existence. To seize control over the structure of one’s time is my own definition of what it means, as it is said in the Tibetan Book of the Dead, to avoid “devoting thyself to the useless doings of this life.” And that, more than anything, is what I have taken away from my studies of the time senses of other cultures. Borrowing again from Russell Banks’s image of Hawthorne’s Wakefield: I had moved out of my house and this is what appeared when I looked back to “see what’s true there.” Simply that. (…)

In each country, we went into one or more of the major cities in order to measure three indicators of the tempo of life.

(…)

First, we measured the average walking speed of randomly selected pedestrians over a distance of 60 feet.

(…)

The second experiment focused on an example of speed in the workplace: the time it took postal clerks to fulfill a standard request for stamps. In each city, we presented clerks with a note in the local language requesting a common stamp—the now standard 32-center in the United States, for example. They were also handed paper money—the equivalent of a $5 bill. We measured the elapsed time between the passing of the note and the completion of the request.

Third, as an estimate of a city’s interest in clock time, we observed the accuracy of 15 randomly selected bank clocks in main downtown areas in each city. Times on the 15 clocks were compared to those reported by the phone company.

The three scores for each country were then statistically combined into an overall pace-of-life score.

(…)

Geography of Time Fast Countries

Geography of Time Slow Countries

(…)

We can speculate about the direction of causality between the tempo of life and economic conditions. Most likely, the arrow points both ways. Places with active economies put greater value on time, and places that value time will be more likely to have active economies. Economic variables and the tempo tend to be mutually reinforcing; they come in a package.

(…)

It is one of the great ironies of modern times that, with all of our time-saving creations, people have less time to themselves than ever before. Life in the Middle Ages is usually portrayed as bleak and dreary, but one commodity people had more of than their successors was leisure time. Until the Industrial Revolution, in fact, most evidence suggests that people showed little inclination to work. In Europe through the Middle Ages, the average number of holidays per year was around 115 days. It is interesting to note that still today, poorer countries take more holidays, on the average,than richer ones.

(…)

Our results confirmed the hypothesis: greater individualism was highly related to faster tempos.

(…)

How we define and measure our time does, in fact, border on the religious. And people do not change religions lightly.

(…)

Since our own study found a very strong relationship between economic vitality and the pace of life, we hypothesized that this should also lead to a positive relationship between the pace of life and happiness. And this is exactly what we found: in all of our pace-of-life experiments, people in faster places were more likely to be satisfied with their lives.

(…)

It is in the middle ground between too much and too little pressure that people enter the experience, described in an earlier chapter, called “flow.” When Csikszentmihalyi kept tabs on people by having them wear beepers, asking them at frequent intervals what they were engaged in and how good they felt, the most positive reports came when people were in moderately challenging activities that engaged their skills. People doing too many things at once tended to be overstressed. But those who were doing nothing at all experienced little sense of flow and little pleasure. Many contemporary psychologists believe the flow experience is an important key to a happy and satisfying life. Studies have shown that flow experiences are not only exhilarating but empowering: they raise self-esteem, competence, and one’s overall sense of well-being.

My own studies, we have seen, point to the mixed consequences of a rapid pace of life. People in faster environments are more prone to potentially deleterious stress, as evidenced by higher rates of coronary heart disease; but they are also more likely to achieve a comfortable standard of living and, at least in part because of this, are more satisfied with their lives as a whole.

Download the full pdf here. (C) 1997 Robert Levine All rights reserved.

(received 12.07.2013 at http://www.cycle-planet.com/paleo/AGeographyofTime.pdf)

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See also Arrow, Circle, Spiral and Cylinder – Different Conceptions of Time and History and Map of Happiness.

China’s GDP in 2013

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Only 30% of the world now has a higher GDP per capita than China (2013)

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In many ways, what we are witnessing is not the ‘emergence of Asia’, but the ‘re-emergence of Asia’

(…) In 1820, Asia accounted for just under 60 per cent of total global output, with China and India together accounting for nearly half of global GDP. This was followed by nearly two centuries of economic decline in Asia, ignited by the European industrial revolution—a trend that has now been reversed. (…)

Jayant Menon, ADB

Read the full article online here of here.

/retrieved 09.06.2013 at http://www.eastasiaforum.org/2013/06/09/asia-yet-to-earn-its-future/)

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batman

(retrieved 09.06.2013 at http://adnanramin.wordpress.com/2013/06/02/racism/)

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China’s economic achievement is so enormous, indeed literally without parallel in human history, that it is sometimes difficult for people to take in its scale. A country which in 1978, when “reform and opening up” was launched, was one of the poorest in the world, has now reached a point where it has a higher GDP per capita than the countries containing the majority of the world’s population. Only 30 per cent of the world’s population now lives in countries with higher per capita GDP than China.

China and the World's GDP

To give absolutely precise numbers, drawing on the newly published data for the world economy in 2012 released by the IMF, the chart shows that by 2012, only 30.2 per cent of the world’s population lived in countries with a higher GDP per capita than China, while 50.2 per cent lived in countries with a lower one. China itself constituted 19.6 per cent of the world’s population at this time.

China is, therefore, now in the top half of the world as far as economic development is concerned, and to avoid any suggestions of exaggeration, it should be made clear that these comparisons are at the current market exchange rate measures usually used in China – although calculations in parity purchasing powers (PPPs), which are the measure preferred by the majority of Western economists, makes no significant difference to the result.

The chart also illustrates China’s extraordinary progress. In 1978, when “reform and opening up” began, only 0.5 per cent of the global population lived in countries with a lower GDP per capita than China, while 73.5 per cent lived in countries with a higher GDP per capita. The transition to a situation where China has overtaken the majority of the world’s population in per capita GDP is the greatest economic transformation in human history, both in terms of the short time frame required and number of people affected.

Given that the data clearly shows China has progressed into the top half of the world economy in terms of economic development, why do some persist with misrepresenting China as being “in the middle” or even more misleadingly dubbing it a “poor” country by international standards?

Such misrepresentations make elementary statistical errors which are familiar to those who analyse income distribution data. For example the following argument is sometimes presented: The IMF World Economic Outlook database gives GDP per capita statistics for 188 countries with China ranking 94th – therefore China is “in the middle”. Another sometimes-cited statistic compares China to the world average – in 2012 China’s GDP per capita was 59 per cent of this average figure – making China appear a “poor” country.

The problem with this “list” method is that it does not take population into account. For example, the Caribbean state St Kitts and Nevis, population 57,000, has a higher GDP per capita than China while India, population 1.223 billion, has a lower one. To say China is “between the two”, as though St Kitts and Nevis and India represent equivalent weights in the world economy, is playing games with words rather than carrying out serious analysis. This elementary statistical rule is particularly relevant given that the number of developed economies with small populations is disproportionately large. The population of countries must therefore be taken into account when calculating China’s real relative position in the world economy.

The second mistake, comparing China to the “average”, makes an error so well known in income distribution statistics that it is somewhat surprising anyone gives it any credence, let alone continues to propose it.

Statisticians know that averages, technically speaking the “mean”, can be disproportionately affected by small numbers of extreme values. It is well known that this applies to incomes within countries as small numbers of billionaires artificially raise average incomes in a way that misrepresents the real situation.

This statistical distortion is clear from international data. Average world GDP per capita, that is world GDP divided by the number of people, is slightly more than $10,000 per year. But only 29.9 per cent of the world’s population lives in countries with GDP per capita above that level while 70.1 per cent live in countries below it. Something with only 29.9 per cent above and 70.1 per cent below is not most people’s idea of an average!

What most people understand by an average, the mid-point, is, in proper statistical terms, not the average but the median. Reputable studies on income distribution, therefore, almost invariably use the median, not averages, to avoid this distorting effect of small numbers of extreme values. Using the statistically misleading average, instead of the mid-point, bizarrely transforms the real situation – that China now has a GDP per capita above that of the majority of the world’s population – into giving the impression that China is a poor country!

There are three main reasons why it is important to accurately present China’s level of development.

First, policy must be based on accurate analysis – in serious matters there is no virtue in either optimism or pessimism, only in realism. As the famous Chinese phrase tells us, it is better to seek truth from facts.

Second, accurate presentation is necessary to clearly understand the real economic challenges China faces. For example China’s GDP per capita is now higher than all developing South and South East Asian countries except Malaysia – clarifying why any competitive strategy for China based on low wages is unviable.

Third, China’s position in the top half of the world in terms of GDP per capita makes clear its technological level – China’s economy is now dominated by medium, not low, technology.

Does an accurate presentation of China’s real level of development endanger its international legal status as a developing economy? The World Bank has not yet published new criteria for the GDP per capita necessary to qualify as an “advanced” economy, but the 2011 criteria and statistical data is available and it tells us that the answer to the question is “no”. To classify as “high income”, an economy must have an annual GDP per capita of slightly more than $12,000. Only 16 per cent of the world’s population lives in such economies. It will take 10-15 years for China to achieve “high income” status – although when it does this will more than double the number of people living in such economies.

Achieving the “Chinese dream” requires that the present reality is accurately understood. China has entered the top half of the world’s level of economic development. Only 30 per cent of the world’s population lives in countries with a higher GDP per capita than China. That is the accurate analysis of China’s relative position in the world economy. To achieve the “Chinese dream” requires eliminating not only any exaggerated bombast but also any systematic underestimation

This article originally appeared in Chinese at Sina Finance and in English at China.org.cn.

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 John Ross

John Ross

Is Visiting Professor at Antai College of Economics and Management, Jiao Tong University, Shanghai

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TrackBack URL for this entry: http://www.typepad.com/services/trackback/6a00e554717cc988330192aa48c0e8970d

(retrieved 25.05.2013 at http://ablog.typepad.com/keytrendsinglobalisation/2013/05/only-30-of-the-world-now-has-a-higher-gdp-per-capita-than-china.html)

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Read more about China and it’s economy from John Ross

Key Trends in Globalisation

Seek truth from facts – 实事求是 (Chinese saying originally from the Han dynasty)

http://ablog.typepad.com/keytrendsinglobalisation/

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World Economic Outlook (WEO) – International Monetary Fund – Survey 2013

World Economic Outlook 2013

http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/weo/2013/01/

http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/weo/2013/01/pdf/text.pdf

https://laofutze.files.wordpress.com/2013/05/world-economic-outlook-april-2013.pdf

(above retrieved 25.05.2013 at http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/weo/2013/01/, http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/weo/2013/01/pdf/text.pdf, https://laofutze.files.wordpress.com/2013/05/world-economic-outlook-april-2013.pdf)

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What that dramatic economic shift means to people, describes Onionjuggler in her Force Feeding Duck Style:

A student told me this story as part of a midterm last year, and I thought it was so cute I would share it with you.

For her fifth birthday, Helen’s* mother wanted to make her a special dinner. She lived in the country, and at that time everyone was very poor, so meat was hard to come by. Her mother had to take the day off to travel to a different town to buy some pork, and in the end was only able to afford enough meat for Helen– the rest of the family would have to make due with the usual vegetables and noodles.

That night, Helen was so excited to eat her fancy dinner. But when her mother handed her the bowl, her older brother pointed at it and said, “Look out! There is a spider on the bottom of the bowl!”

Helen tipped the bowl over to look for the spider, and poured her whole dinner onto the dirty floor. Her mother scolded her brother, but she couldn’t salvage the dinner. Poor Helen cried and cried, and she never forgot that birthday.

*Her real name isn’t Helen– that’s just the name she chose for class.

(retrieved 25.05.2013 at http://onionjuggler.wordpress.com/2013/05/20/a-short-story/)

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China in 2050

China in 2050Photo by Benoit Cezard

(retrieved 13.07.2013 at http://de.ce.cn/photo/right/201211/21/t20121121_597748.shtml)

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(reviewed 13.07.2013)

Perceptions of China

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Perceptions of China

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How the world percepts China

Survey of 25 countries and EU sees rise in ‘mostly negative’ rating and decline in ‘mostly positive’ rating, with analysts divided on reasons (China Daily 2013)

Global views of China’s influence have deteriorated sharply, according to a poll conducted for the BBC’s World Service, reaching their lowest level in years.

Analysts said the change reflected China’s increasing positive and negative involvement in international affairs.

The 2013 Country Ratings Poll asked 26,299 people in 25 nations between December and April to rate 16 countries and the European Union on whether their influence in the world was “mostly positive” or “mostly negative”.

Views on China’s influence dropped to the lowest level since the poll began in 2005, with positive views falling eight points to 42 per cent and negative views rising eight points to 39 per cent.

China ranked ninth, behind the US. Of the 25 countries surveyed, 12 held positive views of China, 13 negative views. China ranked fifth in the 2011-2012 poll.

Perceptions of China have deteriorated markedly within the EU, with the percentage of negative views highest in France and second-highest in Spain. In both countries the negative response rose by 19 points in the latest survey, to 68 per cent in France and 67 per cent in Spain.

Views from regions closer to China were not much better, with Australian views on China’s influence plunging dramatically. In the previous survey they were 61 per cent positive and 29 per cent negative but that swung around to 36 per cent positive and 55 per cent negative in the latest survey.

The Japanese response was the most negative among the countries surveyed, with only 5 per cent holding positive views against 64 per cent holding negative views.

In return, the country with the highest negative rating in China was Japan, with just 17 per cent of Chinese holding positive views and 74 per cent viewing Japan negatively, up nine points.

China had one of the most negative attitudes towards the US, with only one in five Chinese respondents holding a positive view, down nine points, and 57 per cent holding negative views.

Dr Lin Limin, from the China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations in Beijing, said China’s image may have been affected by escalating disputes with neighbours and some negative images of rude Chinese tourists and investors, but it was more a reflection of China’s rising power.

“Like (the US) the No1 man, (China) being the No2 man will unavoidably be criticised, which means we are more active in the international arena,” Lin said.

Professor Qiao Mu , of Beijing Foreign Studies University, said the rating had put China in an “embarrassing” position, compared to the nation’s rising economic power and the national image it sought to project.

“It seems China is getting rich fast but its influence ranking is dropping dramatically,” Qiao said. “China is drawing more attention globally, for its increasing foreign aid and participation in international affairs, but now it turns out that the values and the political system China holds are not accepted by the world.”

The poll is conducted by GlobeScan, an international polling firm, and the Programme on International Policy Attitudes at the University of Maryland.

Friday, 24 May, 2013, 8:57am / Laura Zhou laura.zhou@scmp.com

This article first appeared in the South China Morning Post print edition on May 24, 2013 as China’s global image takes battering in poll of nations.

(retrieved 25.05.2013 at http://www.scmp.com/news/china/article/1244498/china-takes-battering-poll-perceptions-25-nations-and-eu)

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Views of China and India Slide While UK’s Ratings Climb: Global Poll (2013)

On average positive views of China across 21 tracking countries have dropped eight points to 42 per cent while negative views have risen by the same amount to reach 39 per cent. After improving for several years, views of China have sunk to their lowest level since polling began in 2005.

Country-Influence~

Views of Differnet Countries' Influence

Read the whole survey online at the BBC website or download .pdf here.

(retrieved 25.05.2013 at http://www.worldpublicopinion.org/pipa/2013%20Country%20Rating%20Poll.pdf)

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Global Views of United States Improve While Other Countries Decline (BBC / PIPA 2010)

Last year’s poll found that views of both Russia and China had deteriorated. Looking at the views of the countries polled in both 2009 and 2010, they appear to have stabilized somewhat this year. Views of Russia in particular are more muted, with a decline both in the proportion of those rating it positively (from 31 to 29%) and those rating it negatively (42 to 37%). China’s positive ratings remain at 40 per cent, while its negative ratings have fallen a little to 38 per cent.

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BBC10_M1_agg

Read the whole survey online at the BBC website or download .pdf here.

(retrieved at http://www.globescan.com/news_archives/bbc2010_countries/ and http://www.globescan.com/news_archives/bbc2010_countries/BBC_2010_countries.pdf)

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How Chinese percept China

Trust among Chinese „drops to record low“ (China Daily)

„Trust among people in China dipped to a record low with less than half of respondents to a recent survey feeling that “most people can be trusted” while only about 30 percent trusted strangers.

The Blue Book of Social Mentality, the latest annual report on the social mentality of China, analyzed respondents’ trust toward different people and organizations and drew a conclusion that trust in society is poor. The trust level was 59.7 points out of a full mark of 100 points.

In 2010, the trust level was 62.9 points.

The study, conducted by the Institute of Sociology under the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, was based on a survey that asked more than 1,900 randomly selected residents in seven cities including Beijing and Shanghai about their opinions on trust.

The latest poll also found that in China, family members are viewed as the most trustworthy, followed by close friends and acquaintances.

It showed that around 30 percent of the people polled trusted strangers on the street and about 24 percent trusted strangers online.

Ma Jinxin, 27, of Beijing, said he learned about the difficulty of building trust with a stranger at a railway station.

Ma said he had returned to Beijing after a business trip and needed to call a friend but his cell phone was dead. He asked a man at the station if he could borrow his phone, but “the guy refused and asked me to look for a public phone”, Ma said.

“I think we tend to become suspicious about any stranger who asks for help because we were taught to do so at school and at home.

“When we see people begging on the street, the first thought that occurs to us is that they are cheaters.”

Shi Aijun, director of the residential committee at Yulindongli community in Beijing’s Fengtai district, said mistrust among people leads to some challenges in her work.

“It’s difficult to persuade people to open their door for the census and answer surveys that require them to give personal information,” she said.

“However, I think this phenomenon is very normal in cities as people live in a so-called stranger society and when you explain yourself clearly, most people will trust you and cooperate.”

When respondents were asked to name institutions that they generally trust, about 69 percent said government, 64 percent public media, 57.5 percent non-governmental organizations, but only about 52 trusted commercial organizations.

The study also found that mistrust among different social groups, particularly between government officials and ordinary citizens as well as doctors and patients, has grown.

An official from Daqing, Heilongjiang province, who spoke to China Daily on condition of anonymity, said forced demolition in China’s urbanization is one of the social issues that has resulted in tension between governmental officials and ordinary people.

“In terms of demolition, some residents assumed that parts of their compensation have been embezzled by local officials, so they resort to petition to seek higher subsidies, while some local officials treat them as troublemakers and do everything possible to stop them,” he said. “Then mistrust grows stronger.”

Wang Junxiu, who co-edited the blue book from the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said the low level of trust in China has led to many problems such as the waste of resources.

To improve trust, Wang urged the government to work harder to ensure all powers are under close watch and punish people who operate scams.

By He Dan ( China Daily)

(retrieved 25.03.2013 at http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/china/2013-02/18/content_16230755.htm?utm_source=Sinocism+Newsletter&utm_campaign=4882d04507-Sinocism02_18_13&utm_medium=email)

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S中国社会心态研究报告2012-2013-

Annual Report on Social Mentality of China (2012~2013)

Subtitle:

By:Wang Junxiu, Yang Yiyin

Publisher:Social Sciences Academic Press

ISBN:978-7-5097-4013-2

Publication Date:2013-01-07

Language:Chinese

(retrieved 25.05.2013 at Annual Report on Social Mentality of China (2012~2013)

Subtitle:

By:Wang Junxiu, Yang Yiyin

Publisher:Social Sciences Academic Press

ISBN:978-7-5097-4013-2

Publication Date:2013-01-07

Language:Chinese

(retrieved 25.05.2013 at http://www.ssapchina.com/ssapzx/c_00000009000200010005/d_0735.htm)

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Poll about China’s global image (South China Morning Post)

Poll about China's Image in the World

Click on the pic to enter poll.

(retrieved 25.05.2013 at http://www.scmp.com/comment/polls/poll/1244803/what-explains-deterioration-chinas-global-image)

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(reviewed 25.05.2013)

Perception and Expression of Emotions in Different Cultures

with 2 comments


Perception and Expression of Emotions in Different Cultures

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Facial Expressions develop in the Womb

baby-faces womb

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(…) Before he or she is born, a fetus begins to move his or her face — parting lips, wrinkling a nose or lowering a brow for example — making movements that, when combined, will one day assemble expressions we all recognize in one another. A new study has shown that, as the fetus develops, these facial motions become increasingly complex. (…)

Nadja Reissland, University of Durham in the United Kingdom

Read the full article online here or download pdf here.

(retrieved 04.02.2014 at http://www.livescience.com/15939-fetus-facial-expressions.html)

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Study of Facial Expression of Blind Athletes

Matsumoto Facial Expressions Blind Sighted

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(…) By studying the expressions of the blind athletes in the Paralympic Game and in comparing them to the expressions to the athletes’ (…) regularly games, we can tell whether they have the same expressions or not.

So the study of the blind athletes in the Paralympic Games told us conclusively, that the source of facial expression of emotions must be resident in some innate biological program, that we all have and are born with and that we have from birth. And that everybody from around the world, as long as you’re a human has that. (…)

David Matsumoto – Professor of Psychology, San Francisco State University (transcription from the video by the editor)

(retrieved 04.02.2014 at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5G6ZR5lJgTI&feature=player_detailpage)

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(…) Central to all human interaction is the mutual understanding of emotions, achieved primarily by a set of biologically rooted social signals evolved for this purpose—facial expressions of emotion. Although facial expressions are widely considered to be the universal language of emotion (…), some negative facial expressions consistently elicit lower recognition levels among Eastern compared to Western groups (…).

Read the full pdf here.

(retrieved 12.02.2014 at http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0960982209014778)

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Visual Perception of Emotions in Different Cultures

Cultural Influences on Perception

(retrieved 09.05.2013 at https://www.boundless.com/psychology/sensation-and-perception/advanced-topics-in-perception/cultural-influences-on-perception/)

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visual reception of emotions

(Color coding is as follows: blue, “left eye”; green, “right eye”; yellow, “bridge of nose”; orange, “center of face”; red, “mouth.”)

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cover_fig3

(The succession of blue → green → blue circles (indicated by the black arrow) corresponds to the fixation sequence “left eye” → “right eye” → “left eye.”)

(…) Here, we report marked differences between EA (East Asians) and WC (Western Caucasian) observers in the decoding of universal facial expressions. EA observers exhibited a significant deficit in categorizing ‘‘fear’’ and ‘‘disgust’’ compared to WC observers. Also, WC observers distributed their fixations evenly across the face, whereas EA observers systematically biased theirs toward the eye region. A model observer revealed that EA observers sample information that is highly similar between certain expressions (i.e., ‘‘fear’’ and ‘‘surprise’’; ‘‘disgust’’ and ‘‘anger’’). Despite the apparent lack of diagnostic information, EA observers persisted in repetitively sampling the eye regions of ‘‘fear,’’ ‘‘disgust,’’ and ‘‘anger.’’ (…)

Cultural Confusions Show that Facial Expressions Are Not Universal by Rachael E. Jack (1, 2); Caroline Blais (3); Christoph Scheepers (1); Philippe G. Schyns (1,2) and Roberto Caldara (1,2) / (1)Department of Psychology, (2) Centre for Cognitive Neuroimaging (CCNi) University of Glasgow, Glasgow G12 8QB, Scotland, UK, (3) Department de Psychologie, Universite de Montreal,Montreal, PQ H3C 3J7, Canada

Download the full .pdf here or online here.

(Current Biology –  Volume 19, Issue 18, 29 September 2009, Pages 1543-1548: retrieved 19.02.2011 under http://www.sciencedirect.com/science?_ob=ArticleURL&_udi=B6VRT-4X0FH86-5&_user=10&_coverDate=09%2F29%2F2009&_rdoc=1&_fmt=high&_orig=search&_origin=search&_sort=d&_docanchor=&view=c&_acct=C000050221&_version=1&_urlVersion=0&_userid=10&md5=afe59a73a6b115faacec22215d993939&searchtype=a )

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Visual Expressions of Emotions in Different Cultures

perception of facial expression

Spatiotemporal location of emotional intensity representation in Western Caucasian and East Asian culture. In each row, color-coded faces show the culture-specific spatiotemporal location of expressive features representing emotional intensity,for each of the six basic emotions. Color coding is asfollows: blue, Western Caucasian; red, East Asian, where values reflect the statistic. All color-coded regions show a significant (P<0.05) cultural difference asindicated by asterisks labeled on the color bar. Note: for the EA models (i.e., red face regions), emotional intensity is represented with characteristic early activations. 

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Expression of Emotions in Western and East Asian Cultures

expression of facial expression

(…) The Western Caucasian models form six emotionally homogenous clusters (e.g., all 30 “happy” models belong to the same cluster, color-coded in purple). In contrast, the East Asian models show considerable model dissimilarity within each emotion category and overlap between categories, particularly for “surprise”,“fear”, “disgust”, “anger” and “sad”(note the heterogeneous color coding of these models). (…)

(…) First, whereas Westerners represent each of the six basic emotions with a distinct set of facial movements common to the group, Easterners do not. Second, Easterners represent emotional intensity with distinctive dynamic eye activity. By refuting the long-standing universality hypothesis, our data highlight the powerful influence of culture on shaping basic behaviors once considered biologically hardwired. (…)

Facial expressions of emotion are not culturally universal by Rachael E. Jack (a,b,1), Oliver G. B. Garrod (b), Hui Yu (b), Roberto Caldara (c), and Philippe G. Schyns (b) – (a) School of Psychology, University of Glasgow, Scotland G12 8Q (b); Institute of Neuroscience and Psychology, University of Glasgow, Scotland G12 8QB, UnitedKingdom; and (c) Department of Psychology, University of Fribourg, Fribourg 1700, Switzerland; see also PNAS May 8, 2012; vol. 109 no. 19

(retrieved 23.06.2013 at http://www.pnas.org/content/109/19/7241.full.pdf+html)

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Emoticons in Different Cultures

emoticon_style

(…) Emoticon styles can be either horizontal or vertical, where horizontal style is known to be preferred by western countries, and the vertical style by eastern countries. This study finds that an important factor determining emoticon style is language rather than geography. Regardless of their inherent meaning, most emoticons co-appeared with both positive and negative affect words (e.g., haha, smile, kill, freak). Furthermore, the contexts and sentiments that were frequently associated with a given emoticon varied from one culture to another. Our finding confirms that facial expressions may not be universal (…); people from different cultures perceive and employ facial expressions in unique ways, as easterners smile and frown with their eyes, whereas westerners do so with their mouth. This was even true in the online world. Therefore one might want to consider the cultural background of one’s followers to communicate efficiently in online social networks. (…)

emoticons in different cultures

Emoticon Style: Interpreting Differences in Emoticons Across Cultures by Jaram Park, Graduate School of Culture Technology, KAIST jaram.park@kaist.ac.kr; Vladimir Barash, Morningside Analytics vlad@morningside-analytics.com; Clay Fink, Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory clayton.fink@jhuapl.edu; Meeyoung Cha, Graduate School of Culture Technology, KAIST meeyoungcha@kaist.edu;

Download the full .pdf online here or here.

(retrieved 30.10.2013 at http://mia.kaist.ac.kr/icwsm13_emoticon.pdf and http://crowdresearch.org/blog/?p=7720)

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Placing the Face in Context: Cultural Differences in the Perception of Facial Emotion

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Placing the Face in Context

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(…) Two studies tested the hypothesis that in judging people’s emotions from their facial expressions, Japanese, more than Westerners, incorporate information from the social context. In Study 1, participants  viewed cartoons depicting a happy, sad, angry, or neutral person surrounded by other people expressing the same emotion as the central person or a different one. The surrounding people’s emotions influenced Japanese but not Westerners’ perceptions of the central person. These differences reflect differences in attention, as indicated by eye-tracking data (Study 2): Japanese looked at the surrounding people more than did Westerners. Previous findings on East–West differences in contextual sensitivity generalize to social contexts, suggesting that Westerners see emotions as individual feelings, whereas Japanese see them as inseparable from the feelings of the group. (…)

Placing the Face in Context: Cultural Differences in the Perception of Facial Emotion by Takahiko Masuda, University of Alberta; Phoebe C. Ellsworth, University of Michigan; Batja Mesquita, Wake Forest University; Janxin Leu, University of Washington; Shigehito Tanida, Hokkaido University; Ellen Van de Veerdonk, University of Amsterdam

Download the full pfd here.

(retrieved 23.06.2013 at http://www.ualberta.ca/~tmasuda/index.files/MasudaEllsworthMesquitaLeuTanidavandeVeerdonk2008.pdf

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Perception of Bodily Sensations during Emotion in different Cultures

“While riding a train, a Chinese friend and I had eaten a lot of snacks that did not mix well. I suddenly suffered from nausea and realized that I was pressing the epigastric region with one hand. I was sure that I had strained my stomach.

At the same moment, my Chinese friend said that he was suffering from vertigo and he seemed very concerned about it. I inquired about his perception several times. He insisted that he was suffering from vertigo and only after some time he remarked that something was wrong with his stomach.

I tried also to experience vertigo, and actually found it was not very difficult because the nausea was associated with a feeling of unclarity or confusion in my head.”

(…) This anectodical story illustrates well how bodily changes in similar situations can be experienced very differently by members of different cultures. Such differences can originate at various levels of the somatisation processes, from the production of physiological changes, to their detection, to their labelling and, ultimatly, to their memory. (…)

The perception of bodily sensations during emotion: A cross-cultural perspective by Pierre Philippot & Bernard Rimé, Research Unit for Clinical & Social Psychology, University of Louvain at Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium; to appear in Polish Journal of Social Psychology, 1997

Download the full article online here or download pdf here.

(retrieved 23.06.2013 at http://www.ecsa.ucl.ac.be/personnel/philippot/Intercult_Polish.pdf)

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(reviewed 26.04.2014)

Written by NoToes

24/02/2011 at 20:27

Posted in All Articles, China, Collectivism and Individualism, Culture influences Brain, Emotions in Different Cultures, Intercultural Management, Surveys

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Internet Pornography in Different Countries

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Jerry Ropelato`s article about the world`s revenues of internet pornography (2006)

Read his full article here.

It is obvious, that Korea spends an enormous sum on internet pornography. Why is that so? Read an analysis about Korean sexuality from the Humboldt Universität Berlin here or visit their website http://www2.hu-berlin.de/sexology/IES/southkorea.html

For sexuality in other countries refer to the index: http://www2.hu-berlin.de/sexology/IES/index-countries.html

Japan and China are following Korea in a distance. Pornography is officially prohibited in China, so the official numbers displayed only show the top of the iceberg. Obviously the Confucian values play a major role in internet pornography.

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Religion and Income in the USA

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How economically successful are different religions in the USA?

(retrieved 05.01.2013 at http://www.pewforum.org/Income-Distribution-Within-US-Religious-Groups.aspx)

Get the full survey “Income Distribution Within U.S. Religious Groups”  online here, or download pdf there.

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Immigrants and their income in the US 2010

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Immigrant’s Top Ten Countries or Origin and the Top Ten Destination Countries 2010

Countries of Origin - Destination Countries~

Religious Breakdown of Migrants 2010

Faithonthemove-chart-11~

(retrieved 05.01.2013 at http://www.pewforum.org/geography/religious-migration-united-states.aspx)

Read the whole survey “Faith on the Move” online here or download pdf there.

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(reviewed 05.01.2013)