Cultural Orientations and Well-Being in Greece: Dyad-Level Processes

  • Konstantinos KafetsiosEmail author
Part of the Cross-Cultural Advancements in Positive Psychology book series (CAPP, volume 13)


In this chapter I explore the ways that an individual’s independent and interdependent self-construal is related to well-being in dyadic interactions in Greece. Previous research on well-being in Greece, a collectivistic culture, found that peoples’ independent self-construal uniquely predicted higher well-being. Yet there is also evidence that those associations are moderated by relationship context, such that higher independent self-construal often results in lower relational well-being in dyadic interactions, especially interactions taking place in close relationships. A study examined links between spouses’ own and partners’ independent and interdependent self-construal and life satisfaction in Greece. Results from actor-partner interdependence models analyses demonstrated that one’s spouse’s life satisfaction was positively associated with one’s own interdependent self-construal, but was negatively associated with the partner’s independent self-construal. Marital satisfaction did not mediate the relationship between chronic interdependence and life satisfaction, but was negatively related to the spouse’s interdependent self-construal. These results suggest that being married can promote evaluations of life satisfaction and well-being for persons with higher interdependent self-construal. This finding is in line with the central cultural mandate (collectivism) in Greece. The present chapter discusses the likely dyad-level processes from a socio-cognitive perspective, linking individuals’ cultural orientations to individual and cultural level processes.


Cultural orientations Greece Social interaction Well-being Dyads 


  1. Baldwin, M. W., Bagust, J., Docherty, S., Browman, A. S., & Jackson, J. C. (2014). The “Rod and Fran Test”: Relationship priming influences cognitive-perceptual performance. The Journal of Social Psychology, 154, 441–446.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Baumeister, R. F., & Leary, M. R. (1995). The need to belong: Desire for interpersonal attachments as a fundamental human motivation. Psychological Bulletin, 117, 497–529.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Busseri, M. A., & Sadava, S. W. (2011). A review of the tripartite structure of subjective well-being: Implications for conceptualization, operationalization, analysis, and synthesis. Personality and Social Psychology Review, 15, 290–314.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Campbell, L., & Kashy, D. A. (2002). Estimating actor, partner, and interaction effects for dyadic data using PROC MIXED and HLM: A user–friendly guide. Personal Relationships, 9, 327–342.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Cross, S. E., Hardin, E., & Gercek-Swing, B. (2011). The what, how, why, and where of self-construal. Personality and Social Psychology Review, 15, 142–179.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Cross, S. E., Morris, M. L., & Gore, J. S. (2002). Thinking about oneself and others: The relational-interdependent self-construal and social cognition. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 82, 399–418.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. De Leersnyder, J., Mesquita, B., & Kim, H. S. (2011). Where do my emotions belong? A study of immigrants’ emotional acculturation. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 37, 451–463.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Deci, E. L., & Ryan, R. M. (2000). The “what” and “why” of goal pursuits: Human needs and the self-determination of behavior. Psychological Inquiry, 11, 227–268.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Demir, M., & Özdemir, M. (2010). Friendship, need satisfaction and happiness. Journal of Happiness Studies, 11, 243–259.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Diener, E. (2000). Subjective well-being: The science of happiness and a proposal for a national index. American Psychologist, 55, 34–43.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Diener, E., Diener, M., & Diener, C. (1995). Factors predicting the subjective well-being of nations. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 69, 851–864.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Diener, E., Emmons, R. A., Larsen, R. J., & Griffin, S. (1985). The satisfaction with life scale. Journal of Personality Assessment, 49, 71–75.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Diener, E., Gohm, C. L., Suh, E., & Oishi, S. (2000). Similarity of the relations between marital status and subjective well-being across cultures. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 31, 419–436.Google Scholar
  14. Diener, E., Inglehart, R., & Tay, L. (2013). Theory and validity of life satisfaction scales. Social Indicators Research, 112(3), 497–527.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Diener, E., Kahneman, D., Tov, W., & Arora, R. (2010). Income’s association with judgments of life versus feelings. In E. Diener, D. Kahneman, & J. F. Helliwell (Eds.), International differences in well-being (pp. 3–15). Oxford, United Kingdom: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  16. Diener, E., & Suh, E. M. (2000). Culture and subjective well-being. Cambridge, MA: MIT press.Google Scholar
  17. Fitzsimons, G. M., & Bargh, J. A. (2003). Thinking of you: Non conscious pursuit of interpersonal goals associated with relationship partners. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 84, 148–163.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Gable, S., Reis, H., Impett, E., & Asher, E. (2004). What do you do when things go right? The intrapersonal and interpersonal benefits of sharing positive events. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 87, 228–245.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Georgas, J. (1989). Changing family values in Greece from collectivist to individualist. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 20, 80–91.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Giddens, A. (1991). Modernity and self-identity: Self and society in the late modern age. Stanford: Stanford University Press.Google Scholar
  21. Goldberg, D. P. (1978). Manual of the general health questionnaire. Windsor: NFER-NELSON.Google Scholar
  22. Hess, U., Kafetsios, K., Mauersberger, H., Blaison, C., & Kessler, C. (2016). Accuracy and bias in the perception of facial emotion expressions: From labs to life. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 42, 1092–1110.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Hinde, R. A. (1995). A suggested structure for a science of relationships. Personal Relationships, 2, 1–15.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Hofstede, G. (2001). Culture’s consequences: Comparing values, behaviours, institutions and organizations across nations (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
  25. House, J. S., Landis, K. R., & Umberson, D. (1988). Social relationships and health. Science, 241(4865), 540–545.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Kafetsios, K. (2011). Emotion and well-being in two age groups: Relationships with self-construal and socio-emotional selectivity theory [in Greek]. In M. Dafermos, M. Samatas, M. Kourkouritakis, & S. Chiotakis (Eds.), Social sciences in the 21st century: Cutting topics and challenges (pp. 265–285). Athens: Pedio.Google Scholar
  27. Kafetsios, K., & Hess, U. (2013). Effects of activated and dispositional self-construal on emotion perception accuracy. Journal of Nonverbal Behavior, 37, 191–205.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Kafetsios, K., Hess, U., & Nezlek, J. B. (in press). Self-construal, affective valence of the encounter, and quality of social interactions: Within and cross-culture examinations. Journal of Social Psychology.Google Scholar
  29. Kafetsios, K. & Karagiannopoulos, L. (2011, September). Self-construal, emotion and well-being: Combining evidence from cross-sectional and event sampling studies. Oral presentation in the 25th Annual Conference of the European Health Psychology Society. Heraklion, September 20–24.Google Scholar
  30. Kafetsios, K. & Karaolanis, S. (2016). On social status, cultural orientation and well-being: A comparison between urban and rural areas in Greece. Conference proceedings of the 1st International Conference in Contemporary Social Sciences, University of Crete, Rethymno, Greece.Google Scholar
  31. Kafetsios, K., & Nezlek, J. B. (2012). Emotion and support perceptions in everyday social interaction: Testing the “less is more hypothesis” in two different cultures. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 29, 165–184.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Kahneman, D., Krueger, A. B., Schkade, D. A., Schwarz, N., & Stone, A. A. (2004). A survey method for characterizing daily life experience: The day reconstruction method. Science, 306(5702), 1776–1780.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Kelley, H. H., & Thibaut, J. W. (1978). Interpersonal relations: A theory of interdependence. New York: Wiley-Interscience.Google Scholar
  34. Kenny, D. A., Kashy, D. A., & Cook, W. L. (Eds.). (2006). Dyadic data analysis. New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  35. Ledermann, T., & Kenny, D. A. (2012). The common fate model for dyadic data: Variations of a theoretically important but underutilized model. Journal of Family Psychology, 26, 140–148.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Markus, H. R., & Kitayama, S. (1991). Culture and the self: Implications for cognition, emotion, and motivation. Psychological Review, 98, 224–253.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Michalos, A. C. (1986). Job satisfaction, marital satisfaction, and the quality of life: A review and a preview. In F. M. Andrews (Ed.), Research on the quality of life (pp. 57–83). Ann Arbor, MI: Institute for Social Research, University of Michigan.Google Scholar
  38. Nezlek, J. B., Kafetsios, K., & Smith, V. (2008). Emotions in everyday social encounters: Correspondence between culture and self-construal. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 39, 366–372.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Norton, R. (1983). Measuring marital quality: A critical look at the dependent variable. Journal of Marriage and the Family, 45, 141–151.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Oishi, S., Akimoto, S. A., Richards, J. R. K., & Suh, E. M. (2013). Feeling understood as a key to cultural differences in life satisfaction. Journal of Research in Personality, 47, 488–491.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Oishi, S., Koo, M., & Akimoto, S. (2008). Culture, interpersonal perceptions, and happiness in social interactions. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 34, 307–320.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Oyserman, D. (2011). Culture as situated cognition: Cultural mindsets, cultural fluency, and meaning making. European Review of Social Psychology, 22, 164–214.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Oyserman, D., & Lee, S. W. (2008). Does culture influence what and how we think? Effects of priming individualism and collectivism. Psychological Bulletin, 134, 311–342.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Pettigrew, T. F. (2006). The advantages of multilevel approaches. Journal of Social Issues, 62, 615–620.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Reis, H. T. (2008). Reinvigorating the concept of situation in social psychology. Personality and Social Psychology Review, 12, 311–329.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Reis, H. T., Clark, M. S., & Holmes, J. G. (2004). Perceived partner responsiveness as an organizing construct in the study of intimacy and closeness. In D. Matcher & A. Aron (Eds.), Handbook of closeness and intimacy (pp. 201–225). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.Google Scholar
  47. Reis, H. T., Collins, W. A., & Berscheid, E. (2000). The relationship context of human behavior and development. Psychological Bulletin, 126, 844–872.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Sagiv, L., & Schwartz, S. H. (2000). Value priorities and subjective well-being: Direct relations and congruity effects. European Journal of Social Psychology, 30, 177–198.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Saphire-Bernstein, S., & Taylor, S. E. (2013). Close relationship and happiness. In S. A. David, I. Boniwell, & A. Conley Ayers (Eds.), The Oxford handbook of happiness (pp. 821–833). Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  50. Schimmack, U., Schupp, J., & Wagner, G. G. (2008). The influence of environment and personality on the affective and cognitive components of subjective well-being. Social Indicators Research, 89, 41–60.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Singelis, T. M. (1994). The measurement of independent and interdependent self-construals. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 20, 580–591.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Thoits, P. A. (1992). Identity structures and psychological well-being: Gender and marital status comparisons. Social Psychology Quarterly, 55, 236–256.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Uchida, Y., Norasakkunkit, V., & Kitayama, S. (2004). Cultural constructions of happiness: Theory and empirical evidence. Journal of Happiness Studies, 5, 223–239.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Van de Vijver, F. J., & Poortinga, Y. H. (2002). Structural equivalence in multilevel research. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 33, 141–156.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Psychology DepartmentUniversity of CreteRethymnonGreece

Personalised recommendations