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Cultural Influences on Personality Trait Development.
Culture can be defined as a system of life of a set of people, where they have values, beliefs, behaviour and figures that they accept, they do not normally speak about them and are passed along by the use of language and simulated to generations (Ackerman, 2017). This, therefore, implies that people from a specific culture share common personality traits and can be summarized by the Big five model, openness, conscientiousness, extroversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism (OCEAN) (Hussain & Hussain, 2017). The paper will address how Arabic culture expects an individual to exhibit the Big five traits and later show how these personality traits may be expressed differently in other cultures.
To understand Arab culture, Islamic philosophy and religious observance it is more accurate to ascertain that there is an ‘Arab mind’ where it implies a rational framework of Arab personality which includes relational style and enthusiasm. Majority of Arabs are members of a social-cultural assortment with a dissimilarity of normative, philosophical, and separate customs. Though there is no ‘Arab personality,’ there are areas that the individuals in this setting tend to be similar. To Arabs, time is insubstantial, unsolidified, and elastic thus plans and appointment times are uncertain always depending on ‘inshallah’ (Ackerman, 2017). This has repercussion on how followers react to using time as a constituent in the cause and influence affiliation they demonstrate. Arab culture values group or collective identification and intragroup cooperation, put importance on displaying and preserving esteems and self-worth and safeguarding family decency. In this culture also, the act of admitting one’s defilement causes shame and undesirable feelings and doing so intimidates one’s group prestige and principle that one works hard to safeguard (Hussain & Hussain, 2017). Here communications are habitually incidental, inducing effect, descriptions, mutual experience, and hiring a much higher occurrence of representation and allegory.
Due to the fact that Arab culture is collectively oriented, subjects tend to embrace profound value toward family and friend connection. It is culturally acceptable for one to agree with those in a certain setting and in different social interactions and this had a major role in reaction patterns (Ackerman, 2017). The culture expects them to be hospitable and unselfish while in their respective groups and this has enhanced peaceful coexistence. These kind of people are able to deal well with others, often trust others and are generally concerned with the need of others (Hussain & Hussain, 2017). They handle life issues and pressure impeccably.
Among the Arabs, the order is well outlined and respected for example washing of clothes is viewed as women job and not appropriate for men, such boundaries are well observed. Subjects are expected to show a sense of responsibility, attentiveness, meticulousness, objective for achievement, organization and preparation (Hussain & Hussain, 2017). A conscientious person gear sticks his or her emotions, has self-drive and strive to realize objectives, as well as self-control and responsibility, with a high level of organization and single-mindedness on achieving goals. They excel in their capability to delay satisfaction and chase their goals with fortitude and anticipation (Hussain & Hussain, 2017).
Openness to experience new things accepts others value and beliefs and are ready to experiment with several ideas (Ackerman, 2017). It is also called intellect or imagination, where one is willing to be exposed and think beyond the obvious. Cultural plays a big role in how one is able to develop this trait. Where children grew with affirmation, being encouraged to do better and not just follow a routine, they are able to imagine the kind of society they want and think beyond the norm and will look for ways to form it (Hussain & Hussain, 2017). The creative nature in them will cause them to perceive and conceptualize whatever will work for them.
This draws attention on where an individual gets his or strength, to be specific from within or from interacting with others. Extroversion people have a habit of pursuing chances for social relations, where they are habitually the life of the party. Social seclusion resounds negatively with many Arabs and viewed as unusual and unhealthy behavior (Ackerman, 2017). There were even common beliefs among the followers that this seclusion would lead to kidnapping and beheading (Hussain & Hussain, 2017). This cultural, in the end, had a big impact on the development of personality traits.
It is that ability to be comfortable being the real you and do not hide under the pretence of something or someone else. They have traits like worry, downheartedness, irritation, over- sensitivity and they lack self-confidence (Hussain & Hussain, 2017). Children who were raised with no low or no attention tends to have very low self-esteem and may affect even their adult relationship and also how they socialize with the community at large. Lack of affirmation in their childhood may bear negative impacts on the adult position of the said child where he or she may become a person who is always moody, fearful, anxious, timid, unconfident, unstable, and oversensitive and always blaming himself (Ackerman, 2017).
The indication seems to be quite strong that personality variance across age is reasonably related to different cultures. A country like the US and the United Kingdom (Robert, Wood, & Smith, 2004) displays that people become not so extroverted and open to experience, extra agreeable, conscientious, and emotionally steady. Through this studies it evident that there is a remarkable similarity in personality development in early adults’ life across different cultures. However, it is worth noting that different cultures echo differences in languages relations, socio-economic level, family arrangement, religion, and morals (Ackerman, 2017). Due to this variation in values and morals in different cultures, the impact of the Big Five should not be a uniform standard on the measurement of personality development trait. Chinese traditions show factors that had no relation to the Big Five, neuroticism, extraversion, agreeableness, and conscientiousness factor, were identified but openness was not. This would be due to that fact that openness is negatively correlated with collectivism where a culture has few in-groups compared to individualists which have many (Hussain & Hussain, 2017).
The Big Five model of the trait does not measure an individual’s trait development based on their life involvement and it is clear that environment through experience will always influence these personal traits. Men who have experienced occupational independence improved on feelings of proficiency and they become less self-blaming thus they have personal meaning in life (Hussain & Hussain, 2017). Women who had higher and close labour involvement indicated high self-confidence levels and social dominance, and this work contentment led to a declining in measures of neuroticism in them. Women who were only engaged in homemaking with less or no financial contribution were associated with an increase in neuroticism and negative emotionality. Attention should be given here so that one may determine whether it is the personality change that causes the life experience or it is the experience that changes the personality trait (Ackerman, 2017).
Some cultures are collectivist and others are individualist wherein the collective culture people see the environment as more or less rigid, nobles are stable so are duties and obligations, and the people themselves are more or less stable, where personality, attitudes and rights are stable and unchanging (Ackerman, 2017). This cultural difference bears different implication to its subjects where collectivism has higher open-mindedness for contradictions and this all-inclusive thinking lead to conservation of social order and coordination within the in-group , and the individualism shows commonsensical thinking which causes development in science (Hussain & Hussain, 2017).
The valuation of personality across cultures is challenging because there are many ways in which nonequivalence of factors may occur and this may affect the effectiveness of the Big Five. These factors include trait-level difference, trait-structural differences and trait-gender differences. A large body of works proposes that The Big Five personality factors appear in several cultures. Nonetheless, cautiousness is essential in disagreeing for such universality, due to the fact that most studies have not added culture-specific traits and have not premeditated sections that are exceptionally dissimilar in cultures from Western sections.
Ackerman, C. (2017, June 23). Big Five Personality Traits nad The 5-Factor Model Explained . Retrieved from POSITIVEPSYCHOLOGYPROGRAM: https://positivepsychologyprogram.com/big-five-personality-theory/
Hussain, J. A., & Hussain, N. F. (2017, May). Personality Traits of Minority Arab Teachers in the Arab Educational System in Israel. Retrieved from ResearchGate: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/316832708_Personality_Traits_of_Minority_Arab_Teachers_in_the_Arab_Educational_System_in_Israel
Robert, B. W., Wood, D., & Smith, J. L. (2004). Evaluating Five Factor Theory and social investment persepective on personalit trait development. Retrieved from Journal of research in personality: https://s3.amazonaws.com/academia.edu.documents/23794/2akt5fwb7waqi94dsrtm.pdf?AWSAccessKeyId=AKIAIWOWYYGZ2Y53UL3A&Expires=1539671976&Signature=RkMHNFaBfan8zS9QRSjHF%2F7kolM%3D&response-content-disposition=inline%3B%20filename%3DEvaluating_Five_Factor_The