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A Self-Determination Theory Perspective on Social, Institutional, Cultural, and Economic Supports for Autonomy and Their Importance for Well-Being

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Human Autonomy in Cross-Cultural Context

Part of the book series: Cross-Cultural Advancements in Positive Psychology ((CAPP,volume 1))

Abstract

In this chapter the authors discuss modern conceptions of happiness, including hedonic and eudaimonic perspectives. They distinguish happiness as a symptom rather than sine qua non of well-being, and they relate the later to the human capability for autonomous self-regulation. Using a self-determination framework they define autonomy and detail its essential functional role in allowing individuals within any culture to satisfy basic psychological needs for competence and relatedness, and thus to attain psychological well-being and happiness. The chapter also highlights how capacities for autonomous self-regulation, although evolved and “natural” to all humans, are dependent on both proximal (e.g., familial, interpersonal) and distal (political, cultural, economic) supports, and as how need thwarting aspects of social environments can undermine autonomy and wellness.

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Ryan, R.M., Deci, E.L. (2011). A Self-Determination Theory Perspective on Social, Institutional, Cultural, and Economic Supports for Autonomy and Their Importance for Well-Being. In: Chirkov, V., Ryan, R., Sheldon, K. (eds) Human Autonomy in Cross-Cultural Context. Cross-Cultural Advancements in Positive Psychology, vol 1. Springer, Dordrecht. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-90-481-9667-8_3

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