American and Chinese children’s evaluations of personal domain events and resistance to parental authority

Judith G. SMETANA, Mun Amanda WONG, Courtney BALL, Jenny YAU

Research output: Contribution to journalArticles

16 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A total of 267 five-, seven-, and ten-year-olds (M = 7.62), 147 in Hong Kong and 120 in the United States, evaluated hypothetical personal (and moral) events described as either essential or peripheral to actors' identity. Except for young Chinese in the peripheral condition, straightforward personal events were overwhelmingly evaluated as acceptable based on personal justifications. Children primarily endorsed compliance, but attributed negative emotions to actors when mothers forbade personal choices, especially when described as essential to identity. Conventional justifications declined among Chinese children and pragmatic justifications for these judgments increased with age for all children, as did judgments that personal events were up to the child. Rules were seen as more legitimate and events were seen as more up to mothers to decide for moral than personal events. Copyright © 2013 The Authors
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)626-642
JournalChild Development
Volume85
Issue number2
Early online dateJul 2013
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Citation

Smetana, J. G., Wong, M., Ball, C., & Yau, J. (2014). American and Chinese children’s evaluations of personal domain events and resistance to parental authority. Child Development, 85(2), 626-642.

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