Disregard for outsiders: A cultural comparison

Romin W. TAFARODI, Sarah C. SHAUGHNESSY, Wing Sze Wincy LEE, Doris Yin Ping LEUNG, Yuka OZAKI, Hiroaki MORIO, Susumu YAMAGUCHI

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlespeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


The place of outsiders—strangers and otherwise irrelevant others—in the cultural logic of a society holds likely consequences for social perception. The authors begin by describing how outsiders are viewed in Western, Japanese, and Chinese societies. Comparing the three groups, it is proposed that the Chinese are most strongly disposed to disregard or ignore those outside their networks of affiliation and practical involvement. To test this claim experimentally, we assessed the incidental memory of Canadians, Japanese, and Chinese students for social targets of differing situational relevance to the perceiver. As expected, the Chinese showed greater memory advantage than the other groups for primary over nonprimary targets, but only when provided with an explicit justification for exclusive attention. Copyright © 2009 The Author(s).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)567-583
JournalJournal of Cross-Cultural Psychology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2009


Tafarodi, R. W., Shaughnessy, S. C., Lee, W. W. S., Leung, D. Y. P., Ozaki, Y., Morio, H., & Yamaguchi, S. (2009). Disregard for outsiders: A cultural comparison. Journal of Cross-cultural Psychology, 40(4), 567-583. doi: 10.1177/0022022109335182


  • Social memory
  • Selective attention
  • Strangers


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