'Individualism-collectivism' as an explanatory device for mental illness stigma
AffiliationUniversity of Bedfordshire
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AbstractThe aim of this study is to investigate whether the cross-cultural value paradigm 'individualism-collectivism' is a useful explanatory model for mental illness stigma on a cultural level. Using the snowball sampling method, a quantitative questionnaire survey of 305 individuals from four UK-based cultural groups (white-English, American, Greek/Greek Cypriot, and Chinese) was carried out. The validated questionnaires 'Community Attitudes to Mental Illness scale' and the 'vertical-horizontal individualism-collectivism scale' were used. The results revealed that the more stigmatising a culture's mental illness attitudes are, the more likely collectivism effectively explains these attitudes. In contrast, the more positive a culture's mental illness attitudes, the more likely individualism effectively explains attitudes. It is concluded that a consideration of the individualism-collectivism paradigm should be included in any future research aiming to provide a holistic understanding of the causes of mental illness stigma, especially when the cultures stigmatization levels are particularly high or low.
CitationPapadopoulos, C., Foster, J. and Caldwell, K. (2012) 'Individualism-Collectivism' as an Explanatory Device for Mental Illness Stigma', Community Mental Health Journal [epub ahead of print].
JournalCommunity mental health journal
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