Social Axioms and Individualistic–Collectivist Orientations in Indian College Students

Part of the International and Cultural Psychology book series (ICUP)

Leung et al. (2002) have identified five dimensions of social axioms about the world in which each individual functions, though the structure of these beliefs varies somewhat from culture to culture. These five dimensions are social cynicism, reward for application, social complexity, fate control, and religiosity. The present study explores the pattern of social axioms in students of a collecti-vist society, namely, India, and compares the relationship of the axiom dimensions with individualistic—collectivist orientations. Male and female students (N = 172) from two different regions of Eastern India completed the Social Axioms Survey and the Horizontal—Vertical Individualism—Collectivism Scale. The findings reveal that reward for application is the strongest belief for this group of students. Hierarchical regression analyses indicated that horizontal—vertical collectivism and horizontal individualism of students can be efficiently predicted by one's general belief in reward for application. Multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA) results indicated a significant main effect of gender on fate control. Regional variation and one's position in a caste system also affect one's endorsement of social axioms. Although considerable convergence of some of the dimensions of social axioms with individualism—collectivism values was observed, distinctiveness of the constructs is also clear from the results, which need further examination in diverse Indian communities across the generations.


Hierarchical Regression Analysis Social Complexity Collectivist Culture Fate Control Schedule Tribe 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Psychology Research UnitIndian Statistical InstituteCalcuttaIndia

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