S-Space College of Social Sciences (사회과학대학) Center for Social Sciences (사회과학연구원) Korean Social Sciences Review (KSSR) Korean Social Sciences Review (KSSR) Vol.03, No.01/02 (2013)
The Concept of Self in Korea: Indigenous, Cultural, and Psychological Analysis
- Kim, Ui Chol; Park, Young Shin
- Issue Date
- Korean Social Sciences Review(KSSR), Vol.3 No.1, pp. 289-334
- Self; Indigenous Psychology; Objective and Subjective Self; Consistency; Flexibility of the Self; Role-Fulfillment; Korea
- Translated from the article published in Korean Journal of Psychological and Social Issues Vol. 12(4), 2006, with permission from the Korean Psychological Association.
- This study examines the concept of the self, using indigenous, cultural and psychological analysis. The self is viewed from four aspects: 1) concept of the self as an entity (the self in general, the self as an unique entity and the self when alone); 2) concept of the self in the context of family (the self when with one’s father, mother, children and spouse); 3) the self within the context of close and working relationships (the self when with friends, teachers, work superior and work subordinate); and 4) the self in the context of the larger society (the self when with strangers and foreigners). A total of 1,465 respondents (623 elementary, middle, high and university students and their parents=842) completed an open-ended questionnaire developed by the present authors. The results reveal two overall patterns of results. First, the concept of self in Korea is influenced by one’s role. Second, the concept of self is influenced by relationship and context, and there is an emphasis on the flexibility and adjustment of the self to relationship and context. Implications of the concept of the self in the context of relationships, roles, and contexts are discussed, along with the importance of indigenous, cultural, and psychological analysis.