Effect of cultural priming on social behavior and EEG correlates of self-processing

Gennady G. Knyazev, Ekaterina A. Merkulova, Alexander N. Savostyanov, Andrey V. Bocharov, Alexander E. Saprigyn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Humans are social beings and the self is inevitably conceptualized in terms of social environment. The degree to which the self is perceived as fundamentally similar or fundamentally different from other people is modulated by cultural stereotypes, such as collectivism and individualism. These stereotypes are not hardwired in our brains and individuals differ in the degree to which they adopt the attitudes that define their culture. Moreover, individuals can acquire multiple sets of cultural knowledge and, depending on the context, either individualistic or collectivistic cultural mindset could be activated. In this study, we used cultural priming techniques to activate either individualistic or collectivistic mindset and investigated the association between source-level EEG connectivity in the default mode network (DMN) and spontaneous self-related thoughts in the subsequent resting state. Afterward, participants performed a social interaction task, in which they were allowed to choose between friendly, avoidant, or aggressive behavior. After collectivism priming, self-related thoughts were associated with increased connectivity of DMN with the right temporoparietal junction (TPJ), which is involved in taking the perspective of others and is more active in representatives of collectivistic cultures, whereas after individualism priming they were associated with increased connectivity with the temporal pole, which is involved in self/other discrimination and is more active in representatives of individualistic cultures. Individual differences in the intensity of post-priming self-related thoughts and the strength of DMN-temporal pole connectivity predicted individual differences in behavior during the social interaction task, with individualistic mindset predisposing to more friendly and trustful social behavior.

Original languageEnglish
Article number236
Pages (from-to)236
Number of pages9
JournalFrontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience
Volume12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 8 Oct 2018

Keywords

  • Collectivism
  • Connectivity
  • Default-mode network
  • EEG
  • Individualism
  • Priming
  • Social behavior
  • Temporoparietal junction
  • PERSONALITY
  • priming
  • HUMAN BRAIN
  • individualism
  • FUNCTIONAL CONNECTIVITY
  • SPONTANEOUS OSCILLATORY ACTIVITY
  • default-mode network
  • collectivism
  • RIGHT TEMPOROPARIETAL JUNCTION
  • connectivity
  • CORTICAL CORRELATION STRUCTURE
  • TEMPORAL POLE
  • social behavior
  • DEFAULT-MODE NETWORK
  • COGNITION
  • temporoparietal junction
  • INDIVIDUALISM-COLLECTIVISM

OECD FOS+WOS

  • 5.01.CN BEHAVIORAL SCIENCES
  • 3.01.RU NEUROSCIENCES

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