Individualism-collectivism and self-concept: Social or contextual?

Louise P. Parkes*, Sherry K. Schneider, Stephen Bochner

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


The cultural constructs of individualism and collectivism (I-C) have been closely identified with different conceptions of the self. In contrast to autonomous, abstract self-concepts, it has been argued that collectivists have concepts of self which are interdependent with others and connected with particular contexts. This study investigated the extent to which spontaneous social and contextual self-concepts were connected to each other and to individual-level I-C measures. Questionnaires were administered to adult employee samples in Australia and South-East Asia (N = 581). Although closely intertwined, social and contextual statements were able to be independently tested in relation to I-C. I-C was primarily related to the social-autonomous dimension of self. Controlling for social self-responses, contextual self-concepts were not independently related to any of the measures of I-C.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)367-383
Number of pages17
JournalAsian Journal of Social Psychology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1999
Externally publishedYes


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