The Relationship Between Culture And Happiness Essay Example
The Relationship Between Culture And Happiness Essay Example

The Relationship Between Culture And Happiness Essay Example

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  • Pages: 11 (2843 words)
  • Published: July 30, 2017
  • Type: Case Study
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`` What everyone wants from life is uninterrupted and echt felicity '' ( Baruch Spinoza ) . Happiness basic significance is an emotion that creates feelings of contentment, love, complete joy, and life satisfaction. However, how felicity is attained and interpreted can change across civilizations throughout the universe. Research workers have asked the inquiry of what makes one civilization happier than another, and why. Harmonizing to Suh and Oishi ( 2002 ) , `` all worlds strive to be happy is true, challenging findings emerged when research workers scrutinized felicity in more item across civilizations: 1 ) individualist civilizations are happier than leftist, 2 ) psychological properties qualifying the ego such as, self-esteem, and self-consistency are more relevant to happiness of individualist than to the felicity of leftist, and 3 ) the self-ju


dgment of felicity is anchored on different types of cues and experience across civilizations. '' Adrian White a research worker at the University of Leicester researched over a 100 surveies within the psychological science of felicity and created the first Map of Happiness utilizing over 80,000 people worldwide, across 178 states. He ranked the states based on relational informations to a states, wellness, wealth, and instruction ( ) .

Subjective wellbeing ( SWB ) is a normally used term within the field of psychological science, which can be defined as how person identifies his or her current life satisfaction or felicity. There are three constituents to SWB: 1 ) life satisfaction, 2 ) positive emotional experiences, and 3 ) absence of negative emotions ( Suh & A ; Oishi, 2002 ) . Therefore, people that are satisfied with their lives on a regular basi

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feel positive emotions, and seldom see negative feelings are considered to possess a high degree of SWB. Most significantly, one 's personal subjective perceptual experience over their ain personal wellbeing can merely be judged by them and is of great importance.

There are many cultural tendencies within SWB such as, happier states tend to be happier, gross national merchandise ( GNP ) every bit good as, a linkage between SWB and income degree across states properties to higher degrees of felicity. On the contrary, the thought that richer states are happier is non true. A state may be economically stable but they may besides value human rights and supply a democratic authorities that contributes to their SWB. Therefore, it is non certain whether possessing a national wealth causes SWB because of their pecuniary value or merely because of non-materialist qualities. Furthermore, there are groups of states that challenge the linkage between SWB and income. Suh and Oishi ( 2002 ) reported that `` SWB studies of some affluent East Asiatic states are among the lowest in the universe ( e.g. , Japan ) , in comparing to some Latin American states ( e.g. , Puerto Rico ) describing holding a higher degree of SWB in contrast to their reported income degree. In add-on, `` Once a state becomes rich plenty to carry through most people 's basic demands ( nutrient, shelter ) , farther economic prosperity does non vouch farther addition of SWB. ''

Individuality, Collectivism, and Subjective Well-Being

Individuality and Bolshevism are dimensions of national civilizations and they are strongly linked to SWB. Individualist societies ( e.g. , America ) values single rights, and feelings are more

of import over the outlooks of the in-group, therefore, everyone is expected to look after themselves and/or their immediate households ; whereas, leftist societies ( e.g. , East Asia ) value the demands of the in-group over the demands of the person. Personal freedom may hold positive and negative effects. Within individualistic or collectivized societies, people have personal freedom to take their ain life style with the hazard of non holding a strong societal support which may take to serious effects such as, self-destruction. On the other manus, leftist societies do posses strong societal support every bit long as one does non seek to carry through personally honoring ends that do non reflect the in-group ends.

Harmonizing to Diener, Diener, and Diener ( 1995 ) , `` although at that place seems to be a trade-off associated with personal freedom, in survey after survey research workers have found that individualist civilization members are happier than collectivized cultural members. One account is that because wealthier individualist societies have a lower degree of hapless life conditions to their counter hapless leftist societies may account for this distinction. Additionally, `` when a state 's grade of individuality is statistically controlled, income no longer predicts subjective wellbeing. ''

A major subscriber to a high degree of SWB is, holding a high sense of personal pick and freedom. In order to accomplish personal ends, individualist are willing to put on the line achieving their ends over holding strong web of support since personal ends affect people on a day-to-day footing whereas, life crisis merely go on on occasion. Additionally, individualistic societies strive for a high degree of SWB than leftist societies. Within

individualistic societies, there is answerability for each person to achieve felicity in their lives because the inability to achieve felicity is perceived as though they have non been successful. Whereas in leftist societies, there is non much personal pick and freedom to seek felicity because their degree of fortune or their lineage is what determines 1s felicity.

Peoples in individualistic civilizations may believe that they are happier than leftist civilizations because they have personal freedom to take how to measure their degree of felicity on their countries of strength such as, their callings or their matrimonies. For illustration, if Bobby is an first-class attorney, whereas, Tom has a successful 30-year matrimony. Consequently, if the most valued personal quality were calling and matrimony success, so they would both would experience rather happy. These single beliefs are respected within individualistic civilizations. However, in leftist civilizations what is valued is based on the in-group and non by the person. For case, accomplishments such as, instruction may be their country of strength and evaluating factor for felicity. For that ground, if they are unable to run into these ends it is viewed as failure to the in-group and they are unable to warrant felicity.

Individualism vs. Collectivism

Psychologist, Dr. Geert Hofstede worked and analyzed 50 states from around the universe and came up with four primary dimensions to depict a state 's civilization, which include Power Distance, Individualism, Masculinity, and Uncertainty Avoidance ( ) . Individualism describes the states orientation towards the group or the person. The orientation that looks to the group is referred to as Collectivism, and the orientation that looks to the person is Individualism. Harmonizing to Hofstede, Individualism

and Collectivism assess the map of the person and the group within society. Hofstede reported that there is a correlativity between individuality and wealth. Within the 10 individualist states, Denmark ranks 74. Hofstede concluded that individualistic civilizations place accomplishment on household and profession.

Denmark has a really high individuality civilization with a mark of 74, with merely seven other states holding a higher individualistic civilization. The Danes are really proud of their work and make non accept aid from others because they believe they do it best. They strive to be on top of their concern acquiring the most recognition or the greatest single virtues. Danes besides like to hold a really private life off from their concern lives. When run intoing they will merely speak about concern programs and work at the working environment and so when at a household repast they will deter concern talk. Denmark is besides a competitory state when it comes to instruction. Even the instruction, Denmark 's individuality is really of import there is a changeless battle to be on top of your category, and have the best classs and virtue position. Although Denmark is a really high individualistic state, they have some leftist features. Danes are proud people, nevertheless, most are modest and reserved about their achievements and chorus from boasting. They believe there is one manner to move and if you are non moving harmonizing to the codifications, person will talk up to rectify or train you. Danes do non like to stand out, nor do they shout or shout so they do non name attending to themselves when in public. In add-on, when making concern each individual

will give their input on the determination and so after acquiring everyoneaa‚¬a„?s input they will do a determination.

T Geert Hofstede Cultural Dimensions Cultural Dimension ( Graph ) . 2003. Retrieved March 15, 2010, from: hypertext transfer protocol: //

The United States high rankings of Individualism mean a more autonomous, egoistic population that is concerned with themselves and their households. Individualist population 's posses a more `` I '' than `` we '' outlook ; for case, when mounting the corporate ladder they do non take into history how this would impact others. Americans are invariably in chase of making for a better occupation or place. When Americans reach success, they are speedy to stress their success and accomplishments. Since America is such a competitory state, the people are expected to support their involvements and seek to advance themselves whenever possible. Unlike the Danes, Americans seldom are modest, they want to be heard, stand out in a crowd, and is ready to tout whenever possible.

World Map of Happiness

Adrian White a societal psychologist from the University of Leicester created the first `` World Map of Happiness '' . White analyzed information from more than 100 surveies within the field of happiness research. Some of the collected informations that White analyzed in order to make a planetary projection of SWB was published by United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization ( UNESCO ) , the Central Intelligence Agency ( CIA ) , the New Economics Foundation, the World Health Organization ( WHO ) , the Veenhoven Database, the Latinbarometer, the Afrobarometer, and the United Nations Human Development Report ( UNHDR ) . In order for White to map out

SWB across 178 states, his research incorporated utilizing a battery of statistical informations along with responses of 80,000 people worldwide.

Adrian White analyzed the informations in relation to a state 's wellness, wealth, and entree to instruction. Harmonizing to White, the chief factors related to finding a state 's felicity are wellness, the degree of poorness, entree to nutrient and H2O, entree to basic instruction, and population size. The top 10 states included Denmark and five other European states, including Switzerland, Austria, and Iceland, while bottoming the list were Zimbabwe and Burundi ( Kamenev, 2006 ) . Some of the better marking states were smaller embracing greater societal coherence with a stronger sense of national individuality, whereas, the states with the largest populations scored the worst. For case, China ranked 82, India 125, and Russia 168. The United States ranked 23.










Irish republic


United States










Costa Rica


United Kingdom








The Bahamas


The Netherlands






Antigua and Barbuda












New Zealand


Soviet union













Jubak, J Jubak, J.. ( 2009 ) . GDP vs. GNH ( Gross National Happiness ) . MSN Money. Retrieved March 15, 2010, from hypertext transfer protocol: // page=2

Not surprisingly, being affluent and healthy can act upon a individual 's degree of felicity. Wealthier states ranked higher on the index such as, Switzerland ranked two, and Luxemburg 10 in comparing to impoverished and unhealthy states like most African states. For case, Zimbabwe ranking 177 has an AIDS rate of 25 % , mean life anticipation of 39, and an 80 % poorness rate. Fellow Africans in Burundi ranked the worst 178, despite have a somewhat lower poorness rate of 68 % , their low ranking was partially due to their changeless struggles between the Hutus and

the Tutsis ( Kamenev, 2006 ) .

In the yesteryear, research workers have linked Bolshevism with a high degree of SWB. However, some extremely collectivized Asiatic states scored worse such as, China ranked 82, Japan 90, and India 125. Furthermore, Capitalist states typically associated with being heartless were non a beginning of sadness. With the top marking states being strong capitalist, including the U.S. ranking 23, allegedly possessing free-market systems attributes to unhappiness because it may make a sense of insecurity and competition is non true.

A Global Projection of Subjective Well-being ( map ) . 2006. Retrieved March 15, 2010 from: hypertext transfer protocol: // NewsNum=893


Denmark easy tops the World Happiness Map with their negative poorness degree, eternal public and societal services, and high criterion of life. Education is of great importance to them, in bend they possess a high degree of instruction including, ace public schools, and low-cost private schools. Their strong sense of national individuality is chiefly due to their low population degrees. Furthermore, their view of natural beauty could non ache them either, nevertheless, the conditions is cold and windy.

Most Danes value equality, cosiness, individualism and democracy. Danes ' tone is informal in comparing with many other states. Friends, household members and co-workers are addressed with the informal `` you '' and their first name. It is besides normal to turn to directors by their first name. Additionally, the informal tone is found in the educational system, where pupils address their instructors by first name.

Discussion and argument are cardinal facets of Dane 's upbringing, both in society and in households. This means that many Danes have a cardinal consciousness that it is possible

to talk up and hold an influence. Danes concern universe and associations are societal, enlightening with a construction that characterizes Denmark.

In Denmark, importance is placed on everyone being equal and holding equal rights without respect to societal background and beginning. Therefore, one could be led to believe that Danes are anti-individualists ; nevertheless, this is far from the truth. As in most other European states, Danes have a cardinal belief in the rights of the person and calling, lodging, etc. , which is selected, based on their single demands. Entrepreneurship and enterprise are prized and assurance is by and large high among Danes. This ability to unite individuality with a focal point on the public assistance of the group is what one could name societal individuality.

Denmark has a comprehensive public wellness service, including physicians, medical specializer, infirmaries, wellness service, place attention, wellness visitant services, and paediatric alveolar consonant attention and more. The Danish wellness service is based on the rule of equal entree to the wellness services for all citizens. The municipalities are responsible for preventive wellness attention plans for kids, place nursing, wellness visitant services, paediatric alveolar consonant attention and in-school wellness services. The municipalities issue wellness cards and administer citizens ' pick of physician and wellness insurance group. The five parts are responsible for runing the infirmaries and psychiatric intervention in the parts.


America is the land of free and strives to `` be all that you can be. '' About every American could hold that American values are based upon single freedom, which may be considered individuality or independency. The United States solidified and vouch these values with the creative activity of the

United States Constitution. It encompasses the belief that it is everyone 's single duty to take his or her ain fate by handling everyone as equal and non judged by race, gender, faith, age, disablement, or sexual penchant.

The key to success and fiscal freedom is frequently attributed to instruction. Education is non limited to the schoolroom for Americans ; it is extend by educational plans such as, extracurricular activities, and internships. Additionally, continued instruction through big instruction plans are merely as every bit valued.

The American household unit is consists of love, regard for all members and conveying felicity to each single member. Individuality is emphasized by leting kids to differ or even reason with their parents, which is regarded as a portion of developing independency. American household values can easy be misunderstood by other civilizations or perceived as a mark of discourtesy.

The American Dream is attained by difficult work, continuity, and resilience. Success is measured by single success, power, position, and wealth. In America, the authorities protects the rights of the person and the person does non necessitate to protect those of the authorities. Progression is the key to success and alteration is changeless in America. If one can non maintain up with what is go oning they will be left behind because was of import yesterday is non needfully of import today.

The Hunt for felicity in America can be rather hard because it can be compared to an single athletics. Americans are rather competitory including the hunt for felicity. It is believed that felicity is straight attributed to a individual 's household and friends. Interestingly plenty, perchance everything that defines an American could perchance

be what is forestalling us from being happy.


One 's felicity is influenced merely every bit much by civilization as it does by our ends and personalities. Most people in society desire some signifier of well-being psychologically every bit good as physically. Depending on what civilization a individual is a portion of may be the defining factor for whether a individual his happy or non. Many research workers from the field of felicity psychological science have studied whether felicity could be regarded as cosmopolitan. We now know that it is non. The chase of felicity varies greatly depending on one 's civilization and fortunes. What is certain is that felicity is linked to wellness, wealth, and instruction. Furthermore, whether or non one is a portion of an individualist or leftist state, is it the person that has precedence or is it the in-group that makes person happy?

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