Levine_et_al_1995_article

Levine_et_al_1995_article - College students from secondary...

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Unformatted text preview: College students from secondary population centers in India, Pakistan, Thailand, Mex- ico, Brazil, Japan, Hong Kong, the Philippines, Australia, England, and the United States were asked to rate the importance of love for both the establishment and the maintenance of a marriage. Love tended to receive greatest importance in the Western and Westernized nations and least importance in the underdeveloped Eastern nations. These differences were stronger and clearer for decisions regarding the establishment of a marriage than for the maintenance and dissolution of a marriage. There were few significant sex differences, either across or within countries. lndividualistic cultures, as opposed to collective cultures, assigned much greater importance to love in marriage decisions. Respondents assigning greater importance to love also tended to come from nations with higher economic standards of living, higher marriage rates and divorce rates, and lower fertility rates. LOVE AND MARRIAGE IN ELEVEN CULTURES ROBERT LEVINE California State University, Fresno SUGURU SATO Sapporo Medical University TSUKASA HASHIMOTO Dushisha University, Kyoto JYOTI VERMA Patna University Cultural stereotype has long asserted that Americans consider love a necessary precondition for marriage. As Burgess and Wallin (1953) wrote more than 40 years ago, “The expected, approved, and sanctioned precondi-- tion to marriage in American society is falling in love. According to our mores, love is the only right basis for marriage.” The few studies that have empirically tested this assumption indicate that Americans do, indeed, tend to perceive love as an essential precondition to marriage—and that this belief is even more widespread today than it was AUTHORS’ NOTE: We wish to thank Alay Ahmad (Pakistan), Michael Bond (Hong Kong), Siriperm Chowsilpa (Thailand), Jose and Maria Dela Coleta (Brazil), Purificacion Flores (Philippines), Linda. Hantrais and Nicola Hodgson (England), and David Richards (Australia) for their generosity in collecting data in their respective countries. Thanks to Michael Bond, Michael Botwin, David Buss, Harry Reis, and two anonymous reviewers for their comments on an earlier version of this article, Requests for reprints should be sent to the first author at the Department of Psychology, California State UniversityeFresno, Fresno, CA 94740—0011. JOURNAL OF CROSS»CULTURAL PSYCHOLOGY, Vol. 26 No. 5, September 1995 554~571 © l995 Western Washington University 554 Levine et al. / LOVE AND MARRIAGE 555 when Burgess and Wallin made their observation. The strongest evidence comes from Simpson, Campbell, and Berscheid (1986), who asked U.S. college students their opinions about the necessity of love as both a precon— dition for marriage and for remaining in a marriage. The authors asked these questions, both in 1976 and 1984, and compared their data to those obtained earlier by Kephart (1967) from a similar survey of college students (see Table 1). In the 1967 survey, Kephart reported that 64.6% of all males and 24.3% of all females answered no to the question: “If a boy (girl) had all the other qualities you desired, would you marry this person if you were not in love with him (her)?" In the Simpson et a1. 1976 and 1984 surveys, more than 80% of both males and females answered no to virtually the same question. It may also be seen that only about one quarter of all men and women in 1976, and slightly more in 1984, absolutely disagreed with the statement that the disappearance of love is a sufficient reason for ending a marriage. (Questions concerning reasons for ending a marriage were not asked in Kephart’s survey.) Simpson et al. concluded that Americans—at least, American col— lege students—do mostly regard romantic love as a necessary precondition for marriage. This was true for men in 1967, and by 1984 was now true for both men and women. Our culture’s belief in the importance of love for marriage, however, appears to be far from universally accepted (e.g., Beach & Tesser, 1988; Branden, 1980). In the majority of the world’s cultures, marriages are arranged by family members—not by the bride and groom (Skolnick, 1987). Within marriage, our conception of love also diverges sharply from those of many other cultures. In India, for example, romantic love and intense emo— tional attachment is typically seen as a threat to the family structure. Far from bolstering the joint family, it often disrupts it (Nyrop, 1985). Vrrtually all empirical studies of romantic love, however, have been unicul- tural. The vast majority have focused on the United States, sometimes offering passing acknowledgment that their findings may be culture specific (see Simmons, vom Kolke, & Shimizu, 1986, and Buss, 1989, for some notable exceptions to this criticism). More pertinent, there are no empirical data systematically comparing cultures or nations concerning their beliefs about the importance of love for marriage. The main purpose of the present study ‘ 'was to collect these data. More specifically, we compared the responses of college students from 11 developed and underdeveloped Eastern and Western countries—India, Pakistan, Thailand, Mexico, Brazil, Japan, Hong Kong, Republic of the Philippines, Australia, England, and the United States—on the questions about love and marriage posed in Simpson et al.’s U.S. surveys. What might we predict? Theoretical discussion of romantic love has also tended to focus on the United States. In an early article, however, Goode Levine et al. / LOVE AND MARRIAGE 557 0%, g g 2 E :1. 3 g 2 I; g (1959) presented a theory of love that makes predictions about the relation— 5, E, °° H m m N m ‘r N ship of love and marriage across cultures He argued that the importance of .3 § & N _ w I: _._ I 3: I : romantic love varies inversely with the strength of extended-family ties. In (43 g 3 N 5 m R m m m N cultures with strong kinship networks and extended-family ties, romantic E love relationships are viewed as irrelevant or even disastrous for marriages, g 3;“ fi 0 o In m m V q a 6! because they disrupt the tradition of family—approved, often arranged, mar— g,‘ 2 5.? E 3! “’5 i 3 Q Si 8 3 fl riage choices. Romantic love in these cultures must be “controlled,”through '2 $3: : e b b N b N a? 0 0 social disapproval, to maintain the strength of kinship networks. :1 g. ,3 c g :3 H g g g g g g; 3 TWO stud1es offer support for some predictions of Goode’s thesis. Rosen— g S, blatt (1967), using-the Human Relations Area File, found that love was more :2 “A g o c: Q a V [\l o a In Important for marriage In cultures where econom1c interdependence between a 2 E9 § 3 v ‘2 5 a 2 8 $ 3 Spouses was weak. The study by S1mmons et al. (1986) also prov1ded i—L a E ‘e N m m M m- tangential support for the theory. They compared attitudes toward love among g c a: E E E g R 8 S g "E college students in Japan, where they assumed a priori that extended-family .—1 E N g ties are stronger, to those of college students in the United States and in 5 J: m é Germany. Consistent with Goode’s prediction, romantic love was least highly E t E g 3 g g valued in the Japanese sample. g g g a: g .5 Hofstede’s (1980) massive 40-nation study of work-related values pro- H 5 Q 5 § 3 a 2 E E vides a database for more clearly testing Goode’s theory, or at least an a E. E "a 2 extension of his theory. Hofstede’s study identified four main dimensions 2:; s w B U 5 ~33 E along which the dominant value systemsof nations could be ordered and g E 8 aa 8 a E 2/ E :34 compared. One of these d1mens1ons—1nd1v1dua11sm-collect1v1sm—appears a g o 3 g 5b 2 g 5,, E 5 5 E to be d1rectly related to Goode’s extended-fam1ly theory. R Z >‘ D ‘1 D Z < O z 35 ‘3 g In societies characterized by individualism, the main concern is with one’s % B, id g E i own interests and that of one’s immediate family. In collective societies, 2 a ‘5’ g 3:; .3 g fi—ll‘ people identify with and conform to the expectations of more extended 3- § g,“ g :3 3 i; z 3 groups—their relatives, clan, or other in-group—who look after their inter- M g E 5 E '2‘ § I; ests in return for their loyalty. a g § S g g '% Triandis and his colleagues, who have extended Hofstede's work, believe a E E 3' 55, that individualism-collectivism is one of the most important sources of a a 3 E; g "5’ a" E v 5 3; cultural differences in social behavior. In collective societies, the individual 8 4‘3 g E g, § 5% 8 lg Us goes along with the in-group even when the demands are costly. One : E a E E; 5 it important feature of this process that Triandis has identified is an emphasis a g 2 5 as a a g g 5;! on social norms and duty as defined by the in—group over the pursuit of E i E0, 3 E f; '3 ED 5 2m; :5 -o % personal pleasure (e.g., Triandis, 1988; Triandis, Bontempo, Vfllareal, Asai, & 5 g E E 33: fig Egg § i g e Lucca, 1933). g g a E a E g I g E E E "g g According to Goode (1959), individual freedom of choice must be con— '5 E g E E g 8‘ g "g 8 2 fl 5, trolled in societies where the interests of the extended family predominate. E E g E g :1”; E E E :e fill? Ti Ti Ti Hofstede and Triandis’s notion of individualism-collectivism is more general, é g but should lead to the same prediction: Societies where the interests of the group predominate over those of the individual should be characterized by 558 JOURNAL OF CROSS-CULTURAL PSYCHOLOGY less individual freedom of choice. Love, which is clearly associated with freedom of choice, should be viewed as less important in marriage decisions in collective cultures. The study had two main goals: first, to examine the cross-cultural gener- ality of the importance placed on romantic love in marriage decisions; and, second, to identify predictors and consequences of these differences. For this second goal, we extracted several social and economic characteristics of each nation from the literature. Our main hypothesis concerned collectivism, which we predicted would be negatively related to the importance placed on romantic love. METHOD PARTICIPANTS A total of 497 males and 673 females enrolled in undergraduate liberal arts classes completed the questionnaire. Samples were drawn from universities in cities from 11 countries (including Hong Kong, which is technically a colony): Patna, India (58 males, 46 females, mean age = 22.2) Peshawar, Pakistan (47 males, 68 females, mean age = 21.6) Chiangmai, Thailand (33 males, 48 females, mean age = 19.2) Irapuato, Mexico (52 males, 67 females, mean age = 22.5) Fresno, California, United States (48 males, 96 females, mean age = 21.9) Birmingham, England (15 males, 41 females, mean age = 21.8) Kyoto, Japan (56 males, 73 females, mean age = 20.1) Uberlandia, Brazil (36 males, 35 females, mean age = 24.0) Darwin, Australia (49 males, 57 females, mean age = 26.2) Tacloban City, Republic of the Philippines (40 males, 48 females, mean age = 19.3) Shatin, Hong Kong (63 males, 93 females, mean age = 18.9) Each of these cities is a secondary population center in its country. Besides providing easy access, college students were chosen with the intention of maximizing equivalence across cultures. Although age and educational level were controlled, it should be noted that the 11 groups do not necessarily represent the same subpopulations in each culture, as different proportions of these cultures attend universities. Students were sampled from secondary—in most cases, remote—population centers under the assumption that they would reflect more traditional values of their culture than students in larger cities. Levine et a1. / LOVE AND MARRIAGE 559 . MEASURES OF THE INIPORTANCE 0F ROMANTIC LOVE Participants were asked the same three questions about their beliefs about the importance of love in marriage that were originally asked in the Kephart * and Simpson et al. studies described earlier: 1. If a man (woman) had all the other qualities you desired, would you marry this person if you were not in love with him (her) (yes, no, or undecided)? 2. If love has completely disappeared from a marriage, I think it is probably best for the couple to make a clean break and start new lives (agree, disagree, or neutral). 3. In my opinion, the disappearance of love is not a sufficient reason for ending a marriage and should not be viewed as such (agree, disagree, or neutral). The questions were administered in English to participants in India, Pakistan, Thailand, England, the Philippines, Australia, Hong Kong, and the United States. For some of these countries—Thailand and Hong Kong, in particular—the decision to administer the questionnaires in English only was based on the judgment of a native professor that the participant sample was relatively fluent in English. It was felt that any potential problems in under— standing the questions were less than potential problems in the translation process. However, it should be pointed out that the word love might have different meanings depending on the language used. The questionnaires were back-translated into Spanish for the Mexican sample, Portuguese for the Brazilian sample, and Japanese for the Japanese sample. . ' PREDICTORS AND CONSEQUENCES OF ROMANTIC LOVE The relationships of several social and economic characteristics of nations to beliefs about the importance of romantic love were examined: Collectivism-individualism. National scores and ranks on collectivism- individualism (described earlier) were taken from Hofstede’s (1980) data for his 40-nation study of work-related values. Economic status. Estimates of per capita wealth were based on per capita gross domestic product (GDP) corrected for living costs, or purchasing power parity (PPP), for 1988 (from Samuelson, 1990). Marriage and family statistics. Fertility, marriage (available for nine countries), and divorce (available for eight countries) rates for the latest available year were taken from Samuelson (1990). 560 JOURNAL OF CROSS—CULTURAL PSYCHOLOGY RESULTS THE UNITED STATES: TIDE PRESENT DATA VERSUS KEPHART’S 1967 DATA AND SIMPSON et HUS 1976 AND 1984 DATA Table 1 presents the present data for US. participants compared to the findings from the earlier Kephart and Simpson et al. studies. A series of chi-square analyses indicated that the distribution of responses obtained in the present study did not differ significantly from the distributions obtained by Simpson et al. in 1986 for either men or for women on any of the three questions (Question 1: both xzs < 1.66, n.s.; Question 2: both xzs < 3.08; Question 3: both xzs < 1.03, n.s.; a’f= 2 in all cases). Also, as in 1976 and 1984, the overall distribution of responses for men versus women did not significantly differ on any of the three questions, all x25 (df: 2) < 1.81, n.s. ROMANTIC LOVE AS A PREREQUISITE FOR ESTABLISHING A MARRIAGE The percentages of participants from each country who responded yes, no, and undecided to Kephart’s original question are presented in Table 2. Initial chi-square analyses indicated that the overall distributions for males versus females were not significantly different, x2 (df: 2) = 1.36, n.s.; nor were the distributions for males versus females within any one country, all xzs (df = 2) < 5.61, n.s.; nor were the distributions for males versus females within any single response category, x25 (df = 1) < 1.29, ns. Thus data for males and females were collapsed for Table 2 and for further analyses.1 The overall across—country chi—square, simultaneously comparing all three responses, was highly significant, x2 (df : 20) = 389.3, p < .0000. To better identify the source of these between—country differences, we also performed across-country chi-square analyses for each response option separately. These data indicated significant between-country differences for each of the three response options, all x25 (df: 10) > 99.5, p < .0001. Overall, participants from India and Pakistan were most likely to say they would marry without love, followed by Thailand. Participants from the remaining countries were considerably less likely to agree to marriage without love. Of the remaining countries, the Japanese and Philippine respondents were less likely than the others to answer “no” and more likely than the others to answer “undecided.” The response patterns of Brazil, Hon g Kong, Australia, the United States, and England were difficult to distinguish. (See summary below for further across- country comparisons.) TABLE 2 Responses to Question 1: “If a man (woman) had all the other qualities you desired, would you marry this person if you were not in love with him (her)?” England Japan Philippines Mexico Brazil Hong Kong Australia United States Thailand Pakistan India 2 § 8“ t: 5.8 4.8 77 .6 4.3 10.2 11.4 2.3 7.3 83.6 3.5 85.9 18.8 50.4 49.0 Yes No 80.0 63.6 80.5 85.7 62.0 33.8 39.1 24.0 Undecided 26.9 15.2 16.7 10.0 9.3 25.0 35.7 9.1 10.6 47.5 10.4 NOTE: Figures given are in percentages. 562 JOURNAL OF CROSS-CULTURAL PSYCHOLOGY ROMANTIC LOVE AS APREREQUISITE :3 g" FOR MAINTAININGAMARRIAGE E g j of § 3 3 i: Q N m m q m N m The percentages of men and women from each country who responded be ,0 agree, disagree, and neutral to the two Simpson et al. questions assessing the § 5 E ‘0 w c role that love should assume in maintaining a marital relationship are pre- go E E a g} ,7, g, a sented in Tables 3 and 4. The overall distributions for men versus women A a"; E 3 a: were again not significantly different for either question, both xzs (df: 2) < En E E N 1.68, n.s. Further, the distribution of responses for men versus women did E E I: g a S g g 3 not significantly differ within any single country, all xzs (df: 2) < 4.52, n.s.; g E 53 “ " a m N ‘0 nor did the distributions for males versus females within any single response a E cu : Q category, all xzs (df: 1) < 1.94, n.s. Thus data for men and women were, E m I: g g E E :3 g 3 again, collapsed for these two questions. ,2 E g "‘ N “' fig 3 g m m T For Question 2 (“If love has completely disappeared from . . .”), the E i g g a overall across-country chi—square, simultaneously comparing all three re— 3 a E E E sponses, was highly significant, )6 (df: 20) = 107.2,p < .0000. Taking each 3 '2 E a g g 3 ,2 5‘; ‘f, E response option separately, all three between—country differences were sig— % s E V V “ E 3 E B N nificant, all xzs (df: 10) > 52.3, p < .0001. As seen in Table 3, Brazilians % E g; I: were most likely to agree that the disappearance of love warranted divorce. g o g H. H o, B, I: g g [<3 I: Pakistani and Philippine respondents were most likely to disagree. Disagree- 6'2 'E, g 3‘ 3 5: 3 a E E '3 N N " ment was least frequent among the Brazilians and Japanese. Japanese and E E 3 g :5 2. Australian respondents were most likely, and Brazilians were least likely, to § § 3 3 o N H § g u: E 00 ct co respond “neutral.” 4: g‘ ;0 3 Q S 1:“ 5 51° 3 3 8 For Question 3 (“In my opinion, the disappearance of love . . .”), the E 8 m '2 3o overall distribution of responses across countries was again significantly 3 g a E? § different, )6 (df = 20) = 163.1, p < .0000. Taking each response option w ‘5 E >. ‘V 3 . . . . . " h.- ‘4 ,\ E E 2 no a) o separately, all three between-country differences were again Significant, all ‘2 if; g ,7, V- : 5 a .g rug 3 g xzs (df= 10) > 64.7, p < .0001. As seen in Table 4, response trends were .3 ,8 m m N 3 5 generally similar to those for Question 2. Again, Brazilians were most likely if E r3 '2 to believe that the absence of love was sufficient reason for ending amarriage. o g g E 2 E Phili ine tici ant ere least likel to believe that the abs nce ofl ve 3 8 § “'3 H o - ‘5 :2 g g 3: «6 PP Par P SW y e 0 gala u: o g mm.‘ a.) warranted divorce. The Japanese were, again, most likely to respond “neu- 8 .2 g m N g“ 5, l“ :30 tral.” Pakistanis were least likely to be neutral. a 5 E 3 5 a 3-5 g 23:2” E gag 5 SUMMARY: CROSS-NATIONAL DIFFERENCES : K m V "‘ g a K :3 ON THE KEPHART/SIMPSON et al. QUESTIONS E) 3 a o m a u .H ~ "1 . To more clearly describe across-country differences on the original E «:30 E l3r 3w 3 g Kephart/Simpson questions, we next converted these responses to an ordinal g, N scale from 1 to 3. Responses indicating greatest importance for love were E § 3 ‘5 g 8 Eng assigned a 3 (no, agree, and disagree responses to Questions 1, 2 and 3, E: E §‘ 513.2 E O a? < 5 z z n: < a z 2 respectively); undecided and neutral responses were assigned a 2; and re- 563 564 JOURNAL OF CROSS—CULTURAL PSYCHOLOGY TABLE 5 Ranks (and Means)3 on Collectivism and Questions 1, 2, and 3 by Country Collectivism— Country Individualismb Question 1 Question 2 Question 3 Pakistan 1 (14) 2 (1.89) 1 (1.84) 3 (1.81) Thailand 2 (20) 3 (2.15) 5 (2.15) 5 (1.84) Hong Kong 3 (25) 7 (2.72) 8 (2.22) 2 (1.73) Mexico 4 (30) 6 (2.70) 9 (2.24) 9 (216) Philippines 5 (32) 4 (2.52) 4 (2.05) l (1.52) Brazil 6(38) 10 (2.81) 11 (2.65) 11 (2.37) Japan 7 (46) 5 (2.60) 9 (2.24) 7 (2.02) lndia 8 (48) 1 (1.75) 6 (2.20) 6 (188) England 9 (89) 9 (2.76) 7 (2.21) 10 (2.20) Australia 10 (90) 8 (2.75) 2 (1.98) 4 (1.83) United States 11 (91) 11 (2.82) 3 (2.01) 8 (2.04) a. Higher ranks and scores indicate greater individualism and more emphasis on romantic love on Questions 1—3. h. Hofstede (1980). sponses ascribing least importance to love were assigned a 1 (yes, disagree, and agree responses for Questions 1, 2 and 3, respectively). This scaling makes assumptions about the distance between response categories that are, of course, technically questionable. However, this method appeared prefer- able to other possible approaches for comparing countries’ beliefs. Table 5 presents the country means and ranks that emerge from this 1 to 3 scale. It is clear that four Western and Westernized nations—the United States, Brazil, England, and Australia—assigned greatest importance to love as a prerequisite to marriage. (Questions may be raised as to whether Brazil should be classified as a Westernized nation. The current classification is intended to reflect the immigration patterns of Brazil’s European heritage.) The four underdeveloped Eastern nations (India, Pakistan, Thailand, and the Philippines) assigned least importance to love. In general, the same trends appeared on Questions 2 and 3, which concerned the importance of love for the maintenance and dissolution of a marriage. One notable inconsistency, however, was the United States, which was highest in its assessment of the importance assigned to love on Question 1. In contrast, U.S. respondents were relatively low in their assessment of the importance of love in the mainte- nance of a marriage‘particularly on Question 2, where its assessment of the criticality of love was third lowest of all countries. Levine et al. / LOVE AND MARRIAGE 565 TABLE 6 Spearman Correlations Between the Love/Marriage Questions and Social and Economic Variables Social and Economic Variable Collectivism- Gross Domestic Marriage Fertility Divorce Individualism Product/Living Rates Rates Rates Costs(n=11) (n=9) (n=11) (n=8) Love/Marriage Questionsa (n = 11) I. If a man (woman) had all the other qualities . . , 056* 075M 070* —().56* 0.35 2. If love has completely disappeared . . . —0.06 0.13 —0.03 —0.30 —0.74* 3. In my opinion, the disappearance of love . . . 0.41 0.33 0.16 —0.15 —0.17 a. For love questions, higher scores indicate greater importance assigned to love. *p < .05; "p < .01. CORRELATION BETWEEN SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC VARIABLES AND BELIEFS ABOUT LOVE For these correlations, each country was treated as an individual partici- pant (N: 11 participants), with 9 participants for birth rates and 8 participants for divorce rates. The small sample size requires treating these statistics with caution. Because of the small sample size, Spearman rank correlations were calculated as well as Pearson’s. The resulting sets of correlation coefficients were relatively similar. The Spearman coefficients are presented in Table 6. (The Pearson coefficients are available from the first author.) Means and standard deviations for the social and economic variables were as follows: collectivism (M = 47.5, SD = 29.1), gross domestic product (M = 8024.9, SD = 8606.4), marriage (M: 7.27, SD = 1.12), fertility (M = 3.02, SD = 1.53), and divorce (M = 1.66, SD = 1.61). It may be seen that each of the social and economic variables was significantly related to beliefs about the importance of love. Overall, these correlations were strongest for Question 1, regarding the establishment of a marriage. Collectivism-individualism, it may be seen, was highly correlated with beliefs about love on Questions 1 and 3. Respondents from individualist countries were much more likely to rate love as essential for the establishment of a marriage, and somewhat less likely to agree that the disappearance of love is not a sufficient reason for ending a marriage. Economic health was even more strongly related to the importance placed on romantic love—particularly, once again, concerning the establishment of 566 JOURNAL OF CROSS-CULTURAL PSYCHOLOGY a marriage. As for collectivism, there was also a tendency for economically stronger nations to express disagreement on Question 3. Countries assigning greater importance to romantic love for the estab— lishment of a relationship had significantly higher marriage rates, signifi- cantly lower fertility rates, and somewhat higher divorce rates. Divorce rates were also highly correlated with the belief that the disappearance of love 4“- warrants dissolution of the marriage (Question 2). DISCUSSION Several main findings emerged. First, as predicted, there were strong cross-cultural differences in the perceived importance of love as a prereq- uisite for establishing a marriage. Love tended to receive greatest importance in the Western and Westernized nations (the United States, followed by Brazil, England, and Australia) and least importance in the four underdevel- oped Eastern nations (India, Pakistan, Thailand, and the Philippines). The two most economically developed of the Eastern nations—Japan and Hong Kong—fell between these two groups. Second, there were also significant cross-cultural differences in beliefs about love as a prerequisite for maintaining a marriage. Again, the Western and Westernized nations tended to assign greatest importance, and the under- developed Eastern nations tended to assign least importance to love. These differences, however, were neither as strong nor as clear as the above differences pertaining to the establishment of a marriage. Cultural norms concerning the import of love for establishing a marriage, it appears, do not necessarily coincide with those regarding the maintenance and dissolution of a marriage. Future studies may need to treat these issues separately. The present data for US. participants provides the sharpest case in point. U.S. participants were highest in beliefs about the importance of love for estab- lishing a marriage, but were closer to the median in their beliefs about love as a necessity for maintaining a marriage. Third, there were few significant sex differences, either across or within countries, on any of the questions. It appears that Simpson et al.’s (1986) findings for the United States, indicating relatively few sex differences in beliefs about the necessity of romantic love for marriage, are also true for many other cultures. Although the general lack of sex differences is consistent with Simpson et al.’s findings for US. participants, they are not necessarily what would be predicted in many of the countries in the current sample. There are consider- able differences in sex roles within many of these countries, and the extent Levine et al. / LOVE AND MARRIAGE 567 of these differences varies greatly from country to country. In Buss’s (1989) study of human mate preferences in a similarly heterogeneous group of cultures, strong sex differences did emerge, with females more highly valuing cues to resource acquisition and males more highly valuing cues to reproduc- tive capacity. Although neither of these two categories would necessarily imply preference for romantic love, it is certainly possible that the lack of sex differences in the current study needs further exploration. It is possible, for example, that the lack of differences may reflect sampling biases within countries. We would expect sex differences to be minimized in student samples, especially in underdeveloped countries, where women who go to college are more likely to be less restricted by traditional sex role expectations. Fourth, our main hypothesis, concerning the relationship of individualism- collectivism to beliefs about the importance of love, was strongly supported. The high correlation (.56) between individualism and the necessity of love for the establishment of a marriage (Question 1) was particularly impressive. Further, it should be recognized that these high correlations were based on data from different subpopulations within each country. Hofstede’s (1980) collectivism sample consisted of employees in business settings, whereas our “love” sample consisted of college students. Each of our samples also came from different locations in each country. Given these differences, it would appear that the nation—level relationship between collectivism and beliefs about love for establishing a marriage is quite robust. To some degree, at least, it appears to cut across age, regional, and educational groups at the level of nations. Fifth, economic standards of living were very strongly related to beliefs about love—particularly, again, concerning the establishment of a marriage (r = .76). Because the present data are correlational, it would be speculative to infer causality between economic conditions, collectivism, and beliefs about love. One possible explanation, however, is that industrial growth produces pressures toward individualism and away from collectivism, As argued earlier, the endorsement of individualism allows the freedom of choice that is inherent in marriages based on freedom of choice. Certainly, this hypothesis is consistent with the United States’ movement from collectivist values, where pragmatic marriage decisions predominated, to individualist values, where romantic love became the guiding force in marriage decisions. This change, most historians agree, coincided with the Industrial Revolution in the 19th century. Until that time, marriage in the United States was primarily an economic arrangement between two families. The Industrial Revolution, however, required that work move outside the home, eventually resulting in an escalation of individualist values, particu— 568 JOURNAL OF CROSS-CULTURAL PSYCHOLOGY larly those concerning marriage and the nuclear family (Leslie & Korman, i 1989). Japan and Hong Kong, it has been argued, are currently undergoing this same transition. Both have achieved economic prosperity out of traditionally ‘ collectivist value systems. Both, however, now appear to be moving closer r to Western style individualism (Iwao, 1989). Consistent with our hypothesis, their scores on our romantic love questions tended to fall between those of the developed Western nations and the underdeveloped Eastern nations. Sixth, it appears that beliefs about the importance of love have behavioral consequences for marital decisions. Respondents assigning greater impor- tance to love, particularly for decisions about the formation of a marriage, tended to come from nations with higher marriage rates, lower fertility rates, and higher divorce rates. The US. sample, for example, which put greatest emphasis on love in decisions about getting married, had the highest marriage and divorce rates and the third lowest fertility rates in our sample. Once again, these data are correlational. However, it is interesting to speculate about possible causative relations. It might be argued that designat- ing romantic love as the decisive criterion for marital decisions results in less inhibition toward getting married. There may, for example, be less pressure to consider long-term consequences when potential spouses feel responsibil- ity only toward each other, rather than knowing that their decisions will affect many others in their collective families. After marriage, it is not surprising that fertility rates are lower in love marriages. After all, the primary reason for marriage in traditional collectivist cultures is, often, to have children, who will then take part in the larger collective. Finally, we found that divorce rates were much higher in countries where respondents agreed with the statement that the disappearance of love warrants making a clean break from the marriage. Given that “staying in love” is a difficult proposition, it is not surprising that marriages made in cultures that place great importance on love would be less likely to endure. Also, the fact that love-marriages are less likely to produce children may reduce the pressure to remain together after love disappears. These arguments are post hoc and speculative. They are, however, consis- tent with the present findings and identify potential interdisciplinary direc- tions for future research on the role and consequences of romantic love in family life. These issues may be particularly worthy of study in the United States, where divorce rates continue at frighteningly high levels—recent statistics indicate that about two thirds of US. marriages made today will end in divorce or permanent separation (Martin & Bumpass, 1989). The proposed model is illustrated in Figure 1. Figur Levine et a1. / LOVE AND MARRIAGE 569 Economic Prosperity \ Collectivisrn i Individualism T ‘ importance of Love T / in Maniago Decisions \ Blflh ‘ Marriage T Rams v Rates Divorce T ) Rates e 1' Relationship of Beliefs About Romantic Love to Other Social and Economic Characteristics ‘ ' hen generalizing the her, we must be extremely cautious wA AS “0th car lation. First, college students ' l opu beliefs of college students to the genera p . represent a biased sample of the overall population. Second, they do not . . . m necessarily represent the same subpopulations in each country, as differe ‘ ' d university. to ortions of these countries atten . i p Ipn some ways, however, the fact that any cross—national differences emerged in college student samples is all the more impressrilve. Onetwgsu: ' ' ' n n derably less traditional than t eir cou expect these groups to be cons1 tries The fact ' ' tern and the less affluent coun . a whole—particularly in the Eas ' ‘ n of that clear cross-cultural differences emerged, particularly on the questt;: the love’s importance in the establishment of a marriage, demonstra ' f cultural values. erseverance and pervaSiveness o , . . . p Finally it is important to consider Bond s (1988) distinction paws: “cultural—level” and “individual-level” relationships. Are a culture. s no ore about love and marriage, and their consequences for marital qu: ityr,’ $11M closely paralleled at the individual level in some cultures than in 0t ers. 570 JOURNAL OF CROSS-CULTURAL PSYCHOLOGY Levine at at, / LOVE AND MARRIAGE 57 i Skolnick, A. S. (1987). The intimate environment: Exploring marriage and the family. Boston: Little, Brown. Simmons, C. H., vom Kolke, A., & Shimizu, H. (1986). Attitudes toward romantic love among American, German, and Japanese students. Journal of Social Psychology, I 26, 327-336. Simpson, 1., Campbell, B., & Berscheid, E. (1986). The association between romantic love and marriage: Kephart (I967) twice revisited. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, I 2, 363-372. Triandis, H. C. (1988). Collectivism vs. individualism: A reconceptualization of a basic concept in cross-cultural social psychology. in G. K. Verma & C. Bagley (Eds), Personality, cognition and values: C ross—cultural perspectives of childhood and adolescence (pp. 6096). London: Macmillan. Triandis, H. C., Bontempo, R., Villareal, M. 1., Asai, M., & Lucca, N. (1988). Individualism and collectivism: Cross-cultural perspectives on self-ingroup relationships. Joumal of Person- ality and Social Psychology, 54, 323—338. are the consequences of marrying for love in a culture that discaurages individual choice, or of marrying for pragmatic reasons in a culture that values marrying for love? Is there, as Dion and Dion (1988) have argued, an inherent conflict between individualistic values and the interdependence demanded by romantic love? These are difficult questions. Given the impor- tance of the marital relationship, however, and the difficulties it currently faces, they warrant further study. NOTE 1. Means and chi—squares for males and females taken separately on this question and subsequent questions are available from the first author. Robert Levine is Chairperson and Professor of Psychology at California State Univer- REFERENCES sity, Fresno. His main research interests are in the areas of cross»cultural psychology, particularly concerning the pace of life and the psychology of helping and altruism. Beach, S., & Tesser, A. (1988). Love and marriage: A cognitive account. in R. S. Stemberg & M_ L Barnes (Eds), The psychology aflove (pp‘ 330355). New Haven, CT: Yale University t", Suguru Sato is Assistant Professor of Psychology at Sapporo Medical University in Japan. His major research interests are in the area of health psychology, with particular Press. Bond, M. H. (1988). Finding universal dimensions ofindividual variation in multicultural studies emphasis on the topic of Psychosomatic illness. of values: The Rokeach and Chinese value surveys. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 55, 1009-1015, I, Tsukasa Hashimoto is Professor of Psychology at Doshisha University in Kyoto, Japan. Branden, N. (1980), T he psychology of romantic love, New York; Bantam. ii His research interests include the study of cultural differences in the Type A personality Burgess, E. W., & Wallin, P. (l953). Engagement and marriage. Philadelphia: Lippincott. r and 0m" ("9‘13 in health PSYChOIOEM Buss, D. M. (1989). Sex differences in human mate preferences: Evolutionary hypotheses tested in 37 cultures Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 12’ L49. Jyoti Verma is a reader in the Institute of Psychological Research and Service at Patna Dion, K. L., & Dion, K. K. ([988). Romantic love: Individual and cultural perspectivcs. 1n University in India, where she teaches courses in social psychology and organizational R. S. Stemberg & M. L. Barnes (Eds), The psychology of love (pp. 264—289). New Haven: behavior Her research interests are in the area of cross-cultural psychology, most Yale University Press. recently with an emphasis on the subject of collectivism in India. Goode, W. J. (1959). The theoretical importance of love. American Sociological Review, 24, f‘ 38—47. Hofstede, G. (1980). Culture’s consequences: International differences in work—related values. Beverly Hills, CA: Sage. Iwao, S. (1989). Changing lives and social consciousness. In Nippon Steel Corporation, Contemporary Japan: Self-portraits (pp. 51—62). Tokyo: Gakuseisha. Kephart, W. M. (1967). Some correlates of romantic love. Journal of Marriage and the Family, 29, 470—474. Leslie, G. R., & Korman, S. K. (1989). The family in social context. New York: Oxford University Press. Martin, T., & Bumpass, L. (1989). Recent trends in marital disruption. Demography, 26, 37-51. Nyrop, R. E. (1985). India: A country study. Washington, DC: US Government Printing Office. Rosenblatt, P. C. (1967). Marital residence and the functions of romantic love. Ethnology, 6, 471-480. Samuelson, R. J. (1990). The economist book ofvital world statistics. New York: Times Books. ...
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