Toward an Integrated
Identity Matrix (IIM) Theory –
Proposals for a Dynamic
Cultural Identity Framework
by Steve J Kulich
Assisted by Zhang Shutian
Shanghai International Studies University
A Key SISU SII Research Focus:
Study the Key Indicators of Deep Culture
Values
Identity
World-View, Beliefs,
Social Axioms
 What happens to these in shifts, transitions?
What internal or external conflicts occur?
 How is our social psychology influenced?
Recommendation: Expand Your
Understanding of IC Psychology
Yan Wenhua’s
严文华 new book:
Linking Intercultural
Communication &
Psychology + Cases
ISBN:7807451408
Social/Cultural Psychology as a Basis –
Exploring Multiple Domains of Culture
Cognitive Concept
Idea Expected
(often Verbal)
Expressed Behavior
Action Expected
(often Nonverbal)
Identity
Spirit/Soul Beliefs
Decision-making
Acceptable
Desired Outcomes
Affective Response
Emotional Expectation
(internally or expressed)
vs. Actual
Identity: Historically A Core Topic
in our IC Field
One starting point in communication –
How do we perceive others?
Who am I?
Who are You?
And what are we connected to?
Social Penetration:
Deepening Identity Disclosure
 Public, Visible, Open
 Private/Personal, Invisible,
Accessible only by Verbal
Communication
 Psychological/Deep
Personality
 Psyche, Mysterious,
Contradictory, Unknown
often even to ourselves
Beyond Individualism-Collectivismto Identities in Self Construals
(Markus & Kitayama, 1991)
Interdependent Self
Mother
Father
x
x
x
x
x
Self
x
x
x
Friend
x
x
x x
x x
Co-worker
Sibling
Past Theoretical Premises - Hierarchies:
 Primary identities should be considered those
for which an individual would sacrifice most of
his time, most of his money, and if need be, his
life.
 Secondary identities are those for which the
individual would sacrifice only some of his time
and money.
 For a tertiary identity, the individual would be
willing to sacrifice only some of his time and
perhaps a little money.
——Richard Cottam, from Singer’s book “Intercultural
Communication: A Perceptual Approach ”
Expanding Multiple Dimensions of Identities
Traditional and Confucius vs. Modern
Collectivist vs. Individualistic
Personal vs. Social
Mainstream vs. Unconventional
Familial Ideologies vs. Individual Pursuits
…………..
Zhang & Kulich (in Wu, 2008)
Questionnaire Design
Originally…..
 Gudykunst’s tri-level categorization (1994)
 Ting-Toomey’s (1999) primary identities from identity
negotiation perspective
 Hofstede’s (1991) layers of culture.
Later…..
 Singer’s (1987) personal, group and national cultures
 Anne Byrne’s (2003) model of researching woman’s
self and social identity
 Zygmunt Bauman’s (2001) analysis of individualization
 Simon Leys’s (1997) interpretation of Confucius
identity
 Elise Boulding’s species identity.
Traditional
and
family-oriented
collectivism
Social and ethnic
identities
Individual and modern
identities
Predicted
Modeling of the
Top 10 Identity
Ranking
Pilot Study: the two 2004 Samples
3rd Year Undergraduates
Continuing Education Students
50
40
40
30
30
20
20
Count
Count
10
0
20
21
AGE
10
22
21 to 25
25 to 30
31 to 43
agecatagory
Number=70
Average age= 21
SD=0.6
Number=70
Average age= 28
SD=4.96
Comparison among the three rankings (continuing education students 2004)
Frequency Top 10
1
family
Mean Top 20
49
2
moral
46
3
education
43
4
5
personality
nationality
6
marital
7
geographic
place
8
social
popularity
9
national
language
10
specialty
41
35
33
29
28
26
24
1
NAME
2
SD Lowest 20
8
1
PER.TYPE
0.63
ETHNICIT
7.67
2
ROOTS
1.55
3
FAMILY
7.59
3
INTEREST
1.94
4
PARENTAL
7.42
4
RELIGIOU
2.06
5
MORAL
7.3
5
EDUCATIO
2.07
6
RELIGIOU
7.25
6
POPULAR
2.07
7
EDUCATION
6.81
7
REJECTED
2.12
8
GENDER
6.59
8
COMPETEN
2.14
9
NATIONAL
6.57
9
WILLFUL
2.18
10
GLOBALIS
6.07
10
NA._LANG
2.21
11
SIBLING
5.73
11
GLOBAL_I
2.28
12
REGIONAL
5.67
12
PERSONAL
2.29
13
SPECIALT
5.63
13
ACTIVE_I
2.29
14
FOR._LAN
5.47
14
ETHNICIT
2.31
15
MARITAL
5.33
15
SOCIAL_P
2.32
16
UNIQUE
5.1
16
ATHIESTI
2.37
17
GEOGRAPH
5.03
17
ACHIVEME
2.4
18
PERSONAL
4.98
18
SIBLING
2.41
19
AGE
4.79
19
FAN_OF_A
2.5
20
MAJOR
4.78
20
GLOBALIS
2.6
Continuing education students 2004
Rank
Questionnaire Item
Undergraduates 2004
Weighted
Mean
Rank
5.31
1
Family Role
4.8
2
Moral Quality
Questionnaire Item
Weighted
Mean
1
Family Role
6.09
2
Moral Quality
3
Education
4.19
3
Education
4
Nationality
3.29
4
Nationality
3.56
5
Personality
2.91
5
Personality
3.19
6
Marital Status*
2.51
6
Gender*
3.19
7
Geographic Place
2.09
7
Personally Unique*
2.47
8
Parental Role*
2.01
8
Name
2.43
9
Specialty
1.93
9
Willful Individualist*
2.26
10
Gender
1.89
10
Special Interest*
2.14
11
Name
1.83
11
Social Popularity
1.83
12
National Language
1.69
12
Geographic Place
1.64
13
Major
1.57
13
Specialty
1.34
14
Social Popularity
1.51
14
Competence
1.24
15
Competence
1.49
15
Major
1.21
16
Personally Unique
1.46
16
Physical Popularity
1.03
17
Foreign Language
1.33
17
Achievements
1.03
18
Rationalist
1.33
18
Globalist
0.97
19
Globalist
1.3
19
Global Ideals
0.93
20
Willful Individual
1.16
20
Religious
0.91
Stable
Chinese
5.37
3.84Identities
No clear-cut distinction between three levels of
Identities in the Top 10 Ranking
family,
moral,
nationality,
marital,
parental
geographic place,
nationality
education
personality
specialty
gender
Traditional familyoriented
collectivism
Individual and
modern identities
Social and ethnic
identities
In dynamic motion between
different dimensions
Static domains of identity seem to be
only part of the picture…
Whether that which we cannot chose…
Race/ethnicity
Religion/ideology
Family name/siblings/hereditary
Geographic origin/locational
To that which we might influence…
Language/accent (linguistic)
Career/vocational (professional)…
Considering Identity & Context –
What are my Cultural Influences?
My Culture
My Group
Me
What about “Identity” in Transition?
In a time of great cultural change in the Roman Empire,
with a new culture emerging:
“The old labels we once used to identify
ourselves – labels like Jew or Greek, slave
or free – are no longer useful. We need
something larger and more
comprehensive.”
Paul of Tarsus, writing to Christians in Corinth (from
the Message translation)
Considering Metaphors of
Identity – The Playing Field of
Interaction
How are Context/Situation &
Identity Related?
Mutually Influencing?
A Multi-Perspectives Approach
Considering Varied Research Levels
Gudykunst 2005 - Presenting Varied
Perspectives – Can they be integrated?
 A Communication Theory of Identity
(Hecht et al)
 Identity Negotiation Theory
(Ting-Toomey)
 Identity Management Theory
(Imahori & Cupach)
 Theorizing Cultural Identifications
(Collier)
Proposed Integrated Identity Matrix
We propose that…
“Individuals in any social interaction
(or anti-social reaction)…
 are actually operating with
(hiding or to some degree enacting)
 multiple identity sets (some congruous or
related, but others contradictory)
 on a multi-level, multi-dimensional field
(complex scaled options),
Proposed Identity Matrix Gambits
and are…
 playing a gambit between a range of
social choices and
contextual ascriptions,
 balancing individual- and social-level
influences with
cognitive tensions
affective meanings
behavioral risk and outcomes.”
Building on Hecht et. al’s CTI (2005)
A Vertical Social Option Scale
A Horizontal Power Option Scale
Varied Identity Games –
Personal Choices
So Where do Identity Categories Fit?
Integrated Identity Matrix Theory










Applying the Integrated Identity Matrix
Model
Will seek to further build, test it…
Analyze 10 years of “emic” data
(“my most important identities”)
(“my cultural story”/Being Chinese)
And “etic” data (Zhang’s lists)
Consider the link to our decade of values
data (lists, proverbs, heroes)
Learning from/with our MA students
 赵冰霞 Zhao Bingxia (2004), Gender identity in
Shanghai university students.
 张书田 Zhang Shutian (2005), Toward a holistic
theory of identity ranking: Application & comparisons
between Chinese, Algerians and American young
adults.
 王晓玲 Wang Shaoling (2007). The influence of
ethnic identity and intergroup contact on
anxiety/uncertainty management and
communication satisfaction: A study of 3 ethnic
groups at a university for minorities.
 迪拉热。吐尔地 Dillara Tur’di (2007). Bilingual
education and intercultural communication in
Xinjiang, China (Uighur Identity).
8 of 84 thesis topics so far Re: Identity
 陈素可 Chen Suke (2007). A quantitative study of
Shanghai post-1980's rural migrant workers' egocentered social network and IC adjustment in
Shanghai, China
 陈莎莎 Chen Shasha (2008). The cultural influence
on the individual's sense of belonging -- A case
study on New Shanghainese's sense of belonging.
 杨怡 Yang Yi (2008). Exploring organizational
identity and acculturation--A case study of Chinese
AIESEC trainees in four Central-Eastern European
countries.
 刘星 Liu Xing (2008). When West meets East and
man meets woman – A cross-cultural study of
gender role attitudes, mathematic performance and
academic emotion.
Contacting us at the SII
 Email:
[email protected]
 Address:
Steve Kulich
The SISU Intercultural Institute
550 W. Dalian Rd. PO Box 359
Shanghai 200083
 Telephone:
021 - 65311900 x 2620
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Proposals for a Dynamic Cultural Identity Framework -