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Psychol Bull. 1998 Jan;123(1):3-32.

Ethnopsychologies: cultural variations in theories of mind.

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Department of Psychology, University of Virginia, Charlottesville 22903-2477, USA.


A set of basic beliefs about others' minds and behavior, referred to as folk psychology or theory of mind, is often discussed as if it were the same the world over. Yet, certainly variation in folk psychology exists. This article compares several aspects of European American theory of mind with other cultural models, as suggested by experiments and ethnographies, with the purpose of illuminating the degree to which there is variation. After summarizing 4 types of variation, the author explores possible sources of variability, implications for the mindreading process, potential universals, and directions for future research.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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