Inclusion of additional studies yields different conclusions: Comment on Sedikides, Gaertner, & Vevea (2005), Journal of Personality and Social Psychology
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In a Journal of Personality and Social Psychology article, Sedikides, Gaertner and Vevea (2005) presented two meta-analyses that included eight papers to investigate the question of whether people from Eastern cultures self-enhance more for traits that they view to be important compared to those that they view as unimportant. The results supported their hypothesis: Self-enhancement appears to be pancultural. However, this conclusion is severely compromised by six relevant papers that are not included in their meta-analyses. Importantly, all of these six studies contradicted their hypothesis. When complete meta-analyses are conducted which include all of the relevant papers, a very different pattern of results emerges. Eastern andWestern cultures do not differ from each other in the pattern of their self-enhancement of independent and interdependent traits. Furthermore, whereas Westerners self-enhanced significantly more for traits that they viewed to be especially important, East Asians did not. Contrary to the Sedikides et al. (2005) suggestion, the existing evidence suggests substantial crosscultural variation in self-enhancement, with Westerners being far more self-enhancing than Easterners. Reasons for the conflicting pattern of findings across methods and meta-analyses are discussed.
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