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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Cultural models, socialization goals, and parenting ethnotheories: A multicultural analysis

  • Author(s): Keller, H
  • Lamm, B
  • Abels, M
  • Yovsi, R
  • Borke, J
  • Jensen, H
  • Papaligoura, Z
  • Holub, C
  • Lo, W
  • Tomiyama, AJ
  • Su, Y
  • Wang, Y
  • Chaudhary, N
  • et al.

This study conceptualizes a cultural model of parenting. It is argued that cultural models are expressed in the degree of familism, which informs socialization goals that are embodied in parenting ethnotheories. Three cultural models were differentiated a priori: independent, interdependent, and autonomous-related. Samples were recruited that were expected to represent these cultural models: German, Euro-American, and Greek middle-class women representing the independent cultural model; Cameroonian Nso and Gujarati farming women representing the interdependent cultural model; and urban Indian, urban Chinese, urban Mexican, and urban Costa Rican women representing the autonomous-related model. These a priori classifications were confirmed with data that addressed different levels of the cultural models of parenting. The authors further confirmed that socialization goals mediate between broader sociocultural orientations (familism) and parenting ethnotheories concerning beliefs about good parenting. The data reveal that the model of autonomous relatedness needs further theoretical and empirical refinement. Problems with empirical studies comparing participants with very different lifestyles are discussed. © 2006 Sage Publications.

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