The speed and direction of the growth of the mental state are distinguished by major social and cultural disparities. Western study results show that children have early mind growth while engaging in family meetings to address desires, feelings, and justifications when correcting their wrongdoing, for example. This style of parenting enhances the emotional state of children as opposed to authoritarian parenting (Shahaeian, Peterson, Slaughter and Wellman.2011).
A report on Chinese preschoolers undertaken by Liu, Wellman, Tardif, and Sabbagh (2008) reveals that their false interpretation of expectations is an analogous direction to their North American counterparts. These similarities are linked to major differences in the growth timings across cultures, such as variations in executive function development, commonsense psychology, think-falsely verbs present in Chinese languages among others. Another research done by Shahaeian et al. (2011) indicates that Chinese and Iranian children comprehend knowledge sooner than comprehending beliefs. This was contrary to Australian preschoolers who grasped the concepts in reverse order. There was no main difference between the Iranian and Australian children in their general theory of mind development.
Social and cultural surroundings may elicit but cannot define theory of mind development. Hughes and Leekam (2004) argue that personal differences is of less importance as compared to variations due to age since theory of mind is fundamentally a developmental process. Societal encounters are influential in children’s perceptions since they give them information that cannot be explained by their current theory of mind. This information ultimately makes them improve their conceptions. Social settings affect the rate at which they develop a theory of mind whilst cultural differences may perhaps give way on how particular mental states are comprehended. Research findings reveal that theory of mind is uniform across cultures.
Hughes, C., & Leekham, S. (2004). What are the links between theory of mind and social realtions? Review, reflections and new directions for studies of typical and atypical development. Social Behavior, 13(4), 590-619. Retrieved from: www.psy2.ucsd.edu/~davidliu/papers/LiuWellmanTardif2008.pdf
Liu, D., Wellman, H.M., Tardif, T., & Sabbagh, M.A. (2008). Theory of mind development in Chinese children: A meta‐analysis of false‐belief understanding across cultures and languages. Developmental Psychology, 44 (2), 523‐531. doi: 10.1037/0012-16126.96.36.1993
Shahaeian, A., Peterson, C. C., Slaughter, V., and Wellman, H. M. (2011). Culture and the sequence of steps in theory of mind development. Developmental. Psychology. 47, 1239–1247. doi: 10.1037/a0023899
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