British Journal of Developmental Psychology

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Volume 17 Issue 3 (September 1999), Pages 319-481

The outsider's perspective: Young adults’ judgments of social practices of other cultures (pages 451-471)

In this study, judgments of social practices of other cultures were examined. Fortyeight college students judged social practices entailing potentially immoral features to be unacceptable when not culturally grounded but acceptable when they are part of long‐standing cultural traditions. Their tolerant judgments were underlain by a construal of the practices in the other cultures as beneficial and consensual. Subsequently, the same practice was presented in four hypothetical cultural contexts generated by manipulating the type of belief underlying the practice (moral or informational) and the consensual status of the belief within the culture (agreement or disagreement). Participants were tolerant of the practice and of the people engaged in the practice in some contexts but not in others, and judged some types of diversity likely and some unlikely. Their tolerant and intolerant judgments reflected the ways in which specific cultural parameters are understood to transform the meanings and moderate the effects of cultural practices.

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