Sato, K. et al. (2014)

Sato, K.(佐藤剛介), Yuki, M.(結城雅樹)& Norasakkunkit, V. (2014).
A Socio-Ecological Approach to Cross-Cultural Differences in the Sensitivity to Social Rejection: The Partially Mediating Role of Relational Mobility.
Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology.
doi: 10.1177/0022022114544320
The authors propose that cross-cultural differences in sensitivity to social rejection, or the extent to which one is alert to potential rejection from significant others, can be understood as an adaptation to different social ecological contexts varying in the degrees of relational mobility. In societies low in relational mobility, such as East Asia, relationships and group memberships are stable and exclusive, and thus it is difficult for individuals to recover once rejected from current relationships or groups. In these contexts, one would expect people to be continuously paying attention to negative feedback from others in order to avoid potential rejection. In contrast, this type of anxiety will be less pronounced in societies high in relational mobility, such as North America, because there are a greater number of relationship alternatives available, even if individuals were to be excluded from a particular relationship. Results from two cross-national studies showed that, as expected, individuals’ perceptions of relational mobility partially mediated rejection sensitivity (Study 1) and Taijin Kyofusho, an allocentric subtype of social anxiety (Study 2).