Just Another Face in the Crowd? Distinctiveness Seeking in Sweden and Britain
Previous literature on the impact of culture on distinctiveness seeking shows diverging predictions and inconclusive results. We propose that this may be partly due to the fact that distinctiveness can be sought on various levels of awareness. We theorize that cultural values will influence explicit, intentional forms of distinctiveness seeking, but will not necessarily moderate the underlying strength of the identity motive for distinctiveness. Participants in the UK and Sweden completed a measure of cultural values and explicit and implicit measures of distinctiveness seeking. National differences were found in two explicit measures of distinctiveness seeking, and these were partially mediated by individual differences in value priorities. However, no difference was found in our implicit measure of the distinctiveness motive. These findings highlight the importance of attending to the multi-faceted and culturally flexible nature of identity motives.
KeywordsCulture Distinctiveness Identity motives Implicit measures Need for uniqueness
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