The present study aimed to conduct a cross-cultural comparison of creative thinking among Chinese middle school students from the rice- and wheat-growing areas in China through the lens of the rice theory, which postulates that there are major psychological differences among the individuals in these agricultural regions. Differences in cultural mindsets and creativity between the rice group (n = 336) and the wheat group (n = 347) were identified using the Chinese version of (1) the Auckland Individualism and Collectivism Scale (AICS) and (2) the Test for Creative Thinking–Drawing Production (TCT–DP), respectively. Interesting findings were obtained. The results of latent mean analyses indicate that the rice group showed significantly more collectivism and adaptive creativity than the wheat group but less individualism and innovative and boundary-breaking creativity. However, the two groups showed no significant differences in their overall creative performance, as reflected in the TCT–DP composite score. Moreover, results of hierarchical multiple regression analyses revealed that collectivism was positively related to adaptive creativity but negatively related to innovative and boundary-breaking creativity; however, a reverse pattern was found for individualism. These findings enrich the discourse regarding the rice theory and shed important light on the effect of culture on creativity. Copyright © 2022 He and Wong.
CitationHe, W.-J., & Wong, W.-C. (2022). Middle school students from China’s rice area show more adaptive creativity but less innovative and boundary-breaking creativity. Frontiers in Psychology, 12. Retrieved from https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2021.749229
- The rice theory
- Cross-cultural study