Psychology, Department of


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Chapter 17 in The Psychological and Cultural Foundations of East Asian Cognition: Contradiction, Change, and Holism (Julie Spencer-Rodgers and Kaiping Peng, editors), pp. 490–508, New York: Oxford University Press, 2018.


Copyright © 2018 Oxford University Press. Used by permission.


As a result of increasing globalization, people are exposed to an even greater extent to other cultures, making it possible for individuals to assimilate mindsets that are typical of another culture. Recent work on extracultural cognition has shown that immediate cultural contexts exert powerful influences on cognition and behavioral patterns. This chapter reviews empirical support for extracultural cognition. Specifically, the chapter focuses on dialectical thinking and the well-established finding in the cultural literature that Westerners tend to anticipate linear continuity in the environment and East Asians anticipate change in existing patterns. Research shows, though, that cultural cues may shift these tendencies and—at least temporarily—alter cognitive mindsets to reflect the cognitions of another culture. After a review of the literature, the chapter addresses the implications of extracultural cognition for understanding the influence of dialectical thinking on judgment and decision-making.

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