Cultural Differences in Attitudes Toward Action and Inaction: The Role of Dialecticism
The current research examined whether nations differ in their attitudes toward action and inaction. It was anticipated that members of dialectical East Asian societies would show a positive association in their attitudes toward action/inaction. However, members of non-dialectical European-American societies were expected to show a negative association in their attitudes toward action/inaction. Young adults in 19 nations completed measures of dialectical thinking and attitudes toward action/inaction. Results from multi-level modeling showed, as predicted, that people from high dialecticism nations reported a more positive association in their attitudes toward action and inaction than people from low dialecticism nations. Furthermore, these findings remained after controlling for cultural differences in individualism-collectivism, neuroticism, gross-domestic product, and response style. Discussion highlights the implications of these findings for action/inaction goals, dialecticism, and culture.