Social status and anger expression: the cultural moderation hypothesis
Journal or Book Title
Individuals with lower social status have been reported to express more anger, but this evidence comes mostly from Western cultures. Here, we used representative samples of American and Japanese adults and tested the hypothesis that the association between social status and anger expression depends on whether anger serves primarily to vent frustration, as in the United States, or to display authority, as in Japan. Consistent with the assumption that lower social standing is associated with greater frustration stemming from life adversities and blocked goals, Americans with lower social status expressed more anger, with the relationship mediated by the extent of frustration. In contrast, consistent with the assumption that higher social standing affords a privilege to display anger, Japanese with higher social status expressed more anger, with the relationship mediated by decision-making authority. As expected, anger expression was predicted by subjective social status among Americans and by objective social status among Japanese. Implications for the dynamic construction of anger and anger expression are discussed.
Park, Jiyoung; Kitayama, Shinobu; Markus, H; Coe, C.; Miyamoto, Y.; M, Karasawa; Curhan, K.; Love, G.; N, Kawakami; Boylan, J.; and CD, Ryff, "Social status and anger expression: the cultural moderation hypothesis" (2013). Emotion. 8.