In many countries there are gender differences and inequality among boys and girls. High self-esteem and low self-esteem continue to prevail in schools, colleges, communities and societies. Most of the places that carry gender differences are employment offices wherein most educated, intelligent and dynamic young professionals high moral and self-esteem standards in gender differences.
This has become a natural self-concept and is not taught in a school classroom or by the inclusion of a subject on gender differences in educational curriculum. The problem of assessment and analysis of various countries adolescents in terms of gender differences and nature of self-concept is compared from one country to another.
Whether in this era of globalisation, the cultural and gender differences continue to persist among young people as in the past or is there going to be any change in the mindset of young boys and girls. Multinational companies, global operations and global culture and environment have facilitated many young professionals to work in a diversified environment in which there is no sign of gender differences except to the fact that female employees are considered for maternity leave and to seek assistance for nursery care.
However, in many parts of the world, inspite of tremendous potential of technology development, the basic of gender differences continue to exist in terms of superiority of masculine over feminine and this is by and large is acceptable with the fact that, men are more powerful and hard working than women in any part of the world, whether it is in United States, Japan, Europe, UK or Asia. Researchers have made an indepth research on the concept of gender and on the concept of self. 2. Literature Review
Josephs et al (1992) researched that men are more individualistic than women and carry high self-esteem in every aspect and in terms of gaining respect and dignity is also greater than women. This describes that the outlook of men towards society and life is much different from what women search for in life. Men are considered as more superior for all good purposes than men. Kashima et al (1995) in an article conducted a research on gender and self from the view of collectivism and individualism on 1000 psychology students from 5 cultures.
2 collectivists from Korea and Japan, 1 from Hawaii, and 2 individualists from Australia 2 from Mainland USA. All the participants concluded that gender differences and self-concept are basically dependent on the emotional level and dependence. Cultural differences are also due to the response from respondents and those acting as independent agents. There was also another research conducted on gender differences that may not be same in various countries and there were two investigations conducted on this aspect.
The first investigation based on the self-concept of 609 middle class adults from Lithuania, Hong Kong, USA (Watkins Yau, et al.. 1997) It was found that within the country, self-components were much smaller than between-country effects. The second investigation was conducted on 1580 social science undergraduates from 8 countries represented by 4 individuals, 5 collectivist cultures (Watkins Adait, et al 1996) and it was found that collectivism and individualism is not sufficient for explaining cultural differences in self-concept.
Exploration of self-concept has been performed by TST as a powerful tool for assessment of cultural differences in the nature of self-concept. The Adult Sources of Self-esteem Inventory (ASSEI; Elovson & Fleming, 1989) was designed to meet this function and this instrument contains two sections with 20 identical items. The first section describes subjects to identify as to how important each item is for self-esteem and the second section is about rating of self-satisfaction in various aspects.
Markins & Kitayama 1991 has aruged that in a cross cultural setting self-esteem is more appropriately seen in items of self-satisfaction instead of self-enhancement. 3. Research Design Importance of self and self satisfaction with 20 possible sources of self-esteem was collected from countries which were both western and non-western. By conducting varimax factor analysis, the results of average male and female values of each country are obtained from factor scores. This is called as ecological factor analysis.
These factors are further used to examine correlations with another country level data such as in economic indicators and cultural indices (Hofstede’s 1983) Further Hofstede 1990; Chinese cultural connection 1987 it was argud that cultural instead of individual analysis is the most preferred factor for examining the differences among cultures. The overall saitsfaction for Turkish students was coefficient alpha of . 97 with internal consistency with ASSEI measurement. Further for US sample, the median test-retest reliabilities over a 2 week period indicated .
69 and . 67 respectively (Davis-Zinner, 1990) With the Rosenberg self-esteem scale (Rosenberg, 1965) the ASSEI total satisfaction score in this research as . 37 and . 52. Social desirability was measured by the marlowe-crowne scale and had only minor influences on ASSEI satisfaction scores. The respective correlatios were . 28 and . 23. Cross cultural study validity evidence was performed on 139 Turkish undergraduate students (Inelman, 1996) and found that the coorelation was . 65 and .
55 between ASSEI unweight and unweighted satisfaction scores. General esteem as per Coopersmith self-esteem inventory from Swedish study (Watkins, Yau, Dahlin and Wondimu, 1997) which revealed a coorelation of . 45 with self-esteem as assessed by the TST. Factor scores were used in Individualism-Collectivitism by Gender Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) and to correlate with culture level data such as Gross National Product (GNP) and Hofstede’s indices were available. 4. Realiability and Validity
ASSEI is a 20 item inventory that requested each respondent to rate either on 1 for very low and 10 for very high rating scale for the importance on self on gender basis and gender satisfaction with different aspects of person’s self-concept in terms of physical, social, ethical, familial and intellectual. For the facility of non-western nation citzens, each item was translated into the local language by teams of bilingual social scientists by using the approved transation method (Brislin 1986) whereas for Nepal as the English was spoken language, reliability and rating was much easier.
The total participants for the research study were 3604 in total and the participants were mostly undergraduate psychology and educational courses pursuing students. All the students were studying in reputed universities in urban areas including South Africa. The participants were from Australia, Canada, New Zealand, U. S. A, White South Africans, and 10 samples from China, Ethiopia, Hong Kong, India, Malaysia, Nepal, Nigeria, Phillippines, Zimbabwe, and Black Africans according to study of Hofstede 1983.
Appendices and collected survey and data revealed that most of the males and females were leading satisfactory relationships with families, appropriate discharge and delegation of responsibilities and were honest in relationships whereas in terms of earning capacity there was less satisfaction and particularly, south African males and females were leading low satisfactory lives in terms of self-esteem. 5. Statistical analysis
Table 1 explains about Ecological Factor Analysis of Standardized Country Means of ASSEI importance which is based on the 4 factor analysis (Cattell, 1966) The four factor solution is categorized into Factor 1 – Intellectual achievements which is rated as 23. 6%, Factor II – Family values and personal success which is rated as 19. 1%, Factor III – Intelligence vs Group morality which is rated as 12. 1% and Factor IV – Social relationships vs physical abilities which is rated as 10. 3%. Table 2 details about factor scores on 4 ASSEI importance factors for 15 country Groups by gender which is based on Individual Collectivism x Gender ANOVAs.
Satisfaction levels in family relationships, morality levels, personal satisfaction, cultural, physical appearance social relationships and group living styles were some of the factors that were included in the table. Table 3 details about Means of culture, Means for combined Individualist and Collectivist. Culture by gender for importance and satisfaction factor scores. Table 4 is the summary statistics from Individualist/Collectivist x gender analysis of variance of importance and satisfaction factor scores. Table 5.
correlates of importance and satisfaction factor scores with cultural dimensions and Gross National Product (GNP) 6. Conclusion The ecological research conducted on 3604 undergraduate students proved to be very useful for findings on gender differences and nature of self-concept. It was revealed at various levels through factors that there is an overall satisfaction in family relationships and society relationships apart from physical appearance and cultural life style. Females are more careful in family relationships than males.
The research and findings of Bond (1994), Schwartz (1994), Joseph (1992), Watkins Adair, (1996), Trompenaars and Williams (1995) were proved to be very beneficial in this research. The critical study on gender differences along with nature of concept is a very crucial study of human relationships particularly when it is researched on 14 countries wherein different cultures and traditions, languages are involved, this study result is absolutely benefitting and also stands as an example for further analysis of Individualism and collectivism.
References Judith A. Howard Gendered situations, gendered selves Accessed 7 April 2009 http://books. google. co. in/books? id=vn345QTs6t4C&pg=PA73&lpg=PA73&dq=gender+and+nature+of+self-concept&source=bl&ots=uZGIycRv8f&sig=O1gfY3ivjR9o9aC93njWvZ9qjow&hl=en&ei=O8TZSfKNLqjo6gPjieiECw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=4 Marieke K. de Mooij Global marketing and advertising Accessed 7 April 2009 http://books. google. co. in/books?
id=SlRlGVYRBWcC&pg=PA131&lpg=PA131&dq=gender+and+nature+of+self-concept+fourteen+countries+study&source=bl&ots=xPKkCymhWB&sig=DhVFdAO9fGvXrfXpX5ZOm3hSfqc&hl=en&ei=Y8TZSaDDE8mBkQXByZC9CQ&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=8 Susan S. Klein, Handbook for Achieving Gender Equity Through Education Accessed 7 April 2009 http://books. google. co. in/books? id=y0OCnSMf-foC&pg=PA288&lpg=PA288&dq=gender+and+nature+of+self-concept+fourteen+countries+study&source=bl&ots=RMQ2qSaVBx&sig=RRJdn9sz-MEb09URNeHIEcwXp2U&hl=en&ei=Y8TZSaDDE8mBkQXByZC9CQ&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=5