Nezlek, J. B., Schaafsma, J., Safron, M., & Krejtz, I. (in press). Self-construal and the inter- and intraethnic social interactions of ethnic minorities. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology.

This study examined relationships between self-construal and the quality of daily interactions of three ethnic minority groups in Europe: ethnic Turks and Moroccans in the Netherlands and Chechens in Poland. They described the social interactions they had for two weeks and they completed measures of independent and interdependent self-construal. We expected that, regardless of whether individuals' self-construals match with prevailing construals in the host society, interdependent self-construal would be positively related to the quality of intra- and interethnic contact. The results largely confirmed this expectation. Across the two samples, participants who were higher in interdependent self-construal had more positive (and less negative) interactions than participants who were lower in interdependent self-construal. Some of these relationships varied as a function of whether or not a majority group member was present, however. Persons with a more interdependent construal of self felt more liked, respected, accepted, and free to express opinion during interactions in which a majority group member was present whereas no such relationships were found for intra-ethnic interactions. There were very few relationships between independent self-construal and the quality of either intra- or interethnic contact. The results suggest that for the quality of ethnic minorities' daily interactions, their interpersonal orientation is more important than a match between their orientation and the dominant orientation of the majority culture.