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The Psychological and Cultural Foundations of East Asian CognitionContradiction, Change, and Holism$
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Julie Spencer-Rodgers and Kaiping Peng

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780199348541

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780199348541.001.0001

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Dialecticism and the Future Self in Cultural Contexts

Dialecticism and the Future Self in Cultural Contexts

Relation to Well-Being

(p.443) Chapter 15 Dialecticism and the Future Self in Cultural Contexts
The Psychological and Cultural Foundations of East Asian Cognition

Qi Wang

Yubo Hou

Tracy Gould

Oxford University Press

Dialectical thinking reflects both a view of the world and a view of oneself as fluid and changing. This chapter discusses the role of dialectical thinking in people’s prediction of changes in their future selves. Focus is on the future self-concept, namely, the conceptual representation of the self in the future, and the episodic future self, namely, the anticipation of specific future personal events. It is proposed that dialectical thinking, as a form of cultural knowledge, may guide people in their perception of their future selves relative to their present and past selves and in their construction of plausible future events from past experiences. The chapter further discusses the relation of dialectical thinking and the future self to psychological well-being. Throughout the discussion, original data from a cross-cultural project with mainland Chinese and European American college students are presented, to illustrate the psychological and cultural foundations of the future self.

Keywords:   dialectical thinking, future self, future self-concept, episodic future thinking, psychological well-being, cultural knowledge, cross-cultural

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