Perceived social image and life satisfaction across cultures

Cogn Emot. 2013;27(6):1132-41. doi: 10.1080/02699931.2013.767222. Epub 2013 Feb 15.


We studied the relationship between perceived social image and life satisfaction in four different cultural groups. One-hundred nine Indian (63 females, 46 males), 67 Pakistani/Bangladeshi (36 females, 31 males), 76 White British (43 females, 33 males), and 94 European Americans (43 females, 48 males) completed measures on the cultural importance of social image, positive and negative emotions, academic achievement, and perceived social image. Indian and Pakistani/Bangladeshi participants valued social image more than White British and European-American participants. Consistent with this value difference, a positive perceived social image predicted life satisfaction among Indian and Pakistani/Bangladeshi participants only. For these participants, perceived social image predicted life satisfaction above and beyond the effects of emotions and academic achievement. Academic achievement only predicted life satisfaction among White British and European Americans. Emotions were significant predictors of life satisfaction for all participants.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cross-Cultural Comparison*
  • Educational Status
  • Emotions
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Personal Satisfaction*
  • Social Perception*