Cross-Cultural Dimensions of Meaning in the Evaluation of Events in World History? Perceptions of Historical Calamities and Progress in Cross-Cultural Data From Thirty Societies
Contact: James Liu
This research investigates if people from 30 countries perceive important events in world history, like World War II or the abolition of slavery in the 19th century, as similarly negative or positive.
This information may be able to predict a country’s future strategies or people’s willingness to fight for their country.
The findings show that there is little agreement across nations about how events are evaluated and perceived. Participants’ responses show that there is one Western perception and two non-Western perceptions of the same historical events.
Historical events can either be classified as historical disasters (e.g. World Wars, global warming, The Great Depression) or historical progresses (e.g. Man on the Moon, Industrial Revolution, Foundation of the United Nations).
Across the 30 countries there was greater agreement as to what can be considered a historical disaster than a historical progress.
Both historical disasters and progresses predict people’s willingness to fight for their county, but the quality of the prediction varies across cultures.
You can access this report "Cross-Cultural Dimensions of Meaning in the Evaluation of Events in World History? Perceptions of Historical Calamities and Progress in Cross-Cultural Data From Thirty Societies" here.