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Title: Family centredness and democratisation across cultures and generations : investigation of the impacts of macro- and individual-level factors
Author: Park, Miriam Sang-Ah
ISNI:       0000 0004 2724 8233
Awarding Body: Brunel University
Current Institution: Brunel University
Date of Award: 2010
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What are the factors that shape views and attitudes toward the family, and how are these views and attitudes influenced in changing cultures? Do culture, social change/economic development, childhood experiences, and gender influence family centredness and democratisation? Are there different levels of factors that impact on family centredness and democratisation? If so, how are these factors interlinked? The studies discussed in detail in this thesis investigated family perceptions across cultures and generations, looking closely into specific aspects of family views and attitudes and various factors that impact on them. This thesis attempts to answer these questions by conducting three experiments. Study I (described in Chapter 3), which was conducted in Hungary, South Korea, and Canada (total N=403), tested a hypothesised model based on the literature review (Chapter 2). The study looked at cultural differences in family centredness and democratisation, and the impact of cultural orientation, gender, economic growth (national-level), Postmodernist Values, and political beliefs on perceptions of family centredness and democratisation. Study II (described in Chapter 4), conducted in the US and South Korea amongst young individuals in their late teens or early twenties, and their parents' generations, mostly in their forties and fifties (total N= 230). It expanded on the model by adding Schwartz' value dimensions, self-beliefs, and broader aspects of family perceptions. Furthermore, Study II investigated the intergenerational differences and the impact of childhood experiences by comparing data from two generational groups. Study III (Chapter 5) was conducted in four cultures, Canada, Britain, South Korea, and Japan on 539 university students, in order to ascertain cultural influences on values, beliefs, and family centredness and democratisation. Study III also investigated the interlinks between the factors in each culture more specifically using multi-group analysis method in SEM (Structural Equation Modelling). The final chapter summarises and discusses the implications of the major findings from these studies, and makes note of possible methodological issues. Overall, cross-cultural differences in value priorities, self-beliefs, political beliefs, and perceptions of family centredness and democratisation were found. Generation/age, country-level economic growth and gender were significant predictors for values, beliefs and family views and attitudes discussed in this work. Women and younger generations were more likely to endorse the Autonomous-Related Self-belief, believe in the importance of family democratisation. Stronger belief in the Autonomous-Related self led to higher emphases on family centredness and democratisation. Significant relationship was also found between family centredness and democratisation and individual-level values and beliefs, where stronger democratic beliefs led to stronger belief in the importance of family democratisation, higher endorsement of Self-Transcendence values predicted higher levels of family centredness and democratisation, and stronger Consevation Values predicted higher level of family centredness. By investigating factors influencing family centredness and democratisation, the current work probed into the family in the contemporary world. In line with Kagitcibasi's new model of family change, this thesis demonstrates that certain features of family views and relationship, including perceptions of family centredness, are likely to persist, and contends the individualisation theorists' (e.g., Beck, 1997; Giddens, 1992) negative predictions for the future of the family.
Supervisor: Goodwin, R. Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Family perceptions ; Cross-cultural psychology ; Self beliefs ; Value priorities ; Family relationship