Bio


Research Summary: Cultural shaping of emotion and mental health across the life span.

Research Topics: aging, culture, decision science, developmental approaches, motivation and emotion, neuroscience approaches, perception, psychopathology and risk, self and identity

Academic Appointments


Administrative Appointments


  • Associate Professor, Department of Psychology, Stanford University (2007 - Present)
  • Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, Stanford University (2000 - 2007)
  • Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, University of Minnesota (1997 - 2000)
  • Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Public Service and Minority Mental Health, University of California, San Francisco (1996 - 1997)
  • Clinical Intern, University of California, San Francisco (1995 - 1996)
  • Associate Professor, Department of Psychology, Stanford University (2007 - Present)

Honors & Awards


  • Fellow, Society for Personality and Social Psychology (2012)
  • Asian American Activities Center Faculty Award, Stanford University (2009)
  • Nina C. Crocker Faculty Scholar, School of Humanities and Sciences, Stanford University (2007-2010)
  • Dean’s Award for Distinguished Teaching, Stanford University (2005-2006)
  • Early Career Award for Distinguished Contributions, Asian American Psychological Association (2003)
  • Junior Faculty Professional Development Fellowship, Irvine Foundation, Research Institute of Comparative Studies on Race and Ethnicity (2003)
  • Young Investigator Award, National Alliance for Research on Schizophrenia and Affective Disorders (2003-2004)
  • Robert E. Harris Memorial Award, University of California, San Francisco (1997)
  • Western Psychological Association Student Award, Western Psychological Association (1995)
  • Sheldon J. Korchin Prize in Clinical Psychology, UC Berkeley (1995)
  • University of California, Berkeley Graduate Division Fellowship, University of California, Berkeley (1994-1996)
  • National Science Foundation Fellowship, National Science Foundation (1991-1994)
  • Jacob K. Javits Fellowship, Jacob K. Javits (1991)
  • Firestone Award, Stanford University (1991)

Boards, Advisory Committees, Professional Organizations


  • Member, American Psychological Association
  • Member, American Psychological Society
  • Member, Society for Personality and Social Psychology
  • Member, Society of Experimental Social Psychology
  • Member, International Society for Research on Emotion
  • Member, Executive Committee, International Society for Self and Identity (2011 - 2013)
  • Member, Program Committee, Social Psychology and Personality Psychology (2009 - 2010)
  • Treasurer, International Society for Research on Emotion (2006 - 2010)
  • Member, Program Committee, Society for Personality and Social Psychology (2006 - 2007)
  • Member, Program Committee, International Society for Research on Emotion (2005 - 2006)
  • Member, Executive Committee, Emotion Research Group (2005 - 2008)
  • Faculty Mentor, Leadership Alliance Summer Research Program, Stanford University (2003 - 2003)
  • Fellow, Difficult Dialogues on the Changing Structure of the Family, Institute for Research on Women and Gender, Stanford University (2002 - 2005)
  • Member, Selection Committee, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology (2002 - 2002)
  • Member, Committee on Teaching of Psychophysiology, Society of Psychophysiological Research (2002 - 2002)
  • Faculty Member, Psychopathology, and Emotion, PI: Ian Gotlib (2000 - Present)
  • Faculty Member, NIMH Predoctoral Training Grant in Affective Science, PI: Robert Levenson (2000 - Present)
  • Member, Program Committee, Society of Psychophysiological Research (2000 - 2001)
  • Member, Student Award Committee, Society of Psychophysiological Research (2000 - 2001)
  • Faculty Participant, American Psychological Association Minority Fellowship Program (2000 - 2001)
  • Faculty Member, University of Minnesota. PI: Josephine Lee (1999 - 2000)
  • Member, Conference Committee, Society of Psychophysiological Research (1998 - 2002)
  • Member, Program Committee, Society of Psychophysiological Research (1997 - 1998)
  • Consulting Editor, Emotion, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin
  • Reviewer, American Journal of Community Psychology
  • Reviewer, Cognition and Emotion
  • Reviewer, Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology
  • Reviewer, Ethos
  • Reviewer, Journal of Abnormal Psychology
  • Reviewer, Journal of Adolescent Health
  • Reviewer, Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology
  • Reviewer, Journal of Counseling Psychology
  • Reviewer, Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology
  • Reviewer, Journal of Experimental Social Psychology
  • Reviewer, Journal of Family Psychology
  • Reviewer, Journal of Gerontology
  • Reviewer, Journal of Personality
  • Reviewer, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology
  • Reviewer, Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin
  • Reviewer, Political Psychology
  • Reviewer, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
  • Reviewer, Psychological Science
  • Reviewer, Psychology and Aging
  • Reviewer, Psychophysiology
  • Head, Affective Science Area, Dept. of Psychology, Stanford (2012 - Present)
  • Head, Affective Science Area, Dept. of Psychology, Stanford (2010 - 2011)
  • Chair, Undergraduate Education Committee, Dept. of Psychology, Stanford (2009 - Present)
  • Co-Director, Undergraduate Program, Center of Comparative Studies of Race and Ethnicity, Stanford University (2009 - 2010)
  • Director, Undergraduate Program, Center of Comparative Studies of Race and Ethnicity, Stanford University (2008 - 2009)
  • Member, Undergraduate Curriculum Committee, School of Sciences and Humanities, Stanford University (2008 - Present)
  • Member, Diversity Committee, Dept. of Psychology, Stanford University (2008 - Present)
  • Co-chair, Colloquium Committee, Dept. of Psychology, Stanford University (2006 - 2009)
  • Member, NSF Graduate Student Diversity Committee, Stanford University (2006 - Present)
  • Member, Admissions Committee, Department of Psychology, Stanford University (2005 - 2006)
  • Member, Developmental Search Committee, Department of Psychology, Stanford University (2002 - 2003)
  • Chair, Colloquium Committee, Department of Psychology, Stanford University (2001 - 2004)
  • Faculty Adviser, Stanford Undergraduate Psychology Association, Department of Psychology, Stanford University (2001 - 2005)
  • Member, Dissertation Fellowship Committee, Center for Comparative Studies on Race and Ethnicity, Stanford University (2001 - 2002)
  • Member, Library Committee, Department of Psychology, Stanford University (2000 - 2001)
  • Member, Admissions Committee, Department of Psychology, Stanford University (2000 - 2001)
  • Member, Undergraduate Education Committee, Department of Psychology, Stanford University (2001 - 2002)
  • Member, Preliminary Review Committee, Department of Psychology, University of Minnesota (1999 - 2000)
  • Member, CLA Assembly, University of Minnesota (1998 - 1999)
  • Member, Asian American Studies Planning Committee, University of Minnesota (1998 - 1999)
  • Member, Colloquium Committee, Department of Psychology, University of Minnesota (1998 - 1999)

Professional Education


  • Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley, Clinical Psychology (1996)
  • M.A., University of California, Berkeley, Clinical Psychology (1993)
  • B.A., Stanford University, Psychology (1991)

Stanford Advisees


All Publications


  • The religious shaping of emotion: Implications of Affect Valuation Theory Handbook of the Psychology of Religion and Spirituality Tsai, J. L., Koopmann-Holm, B., Ochs, C., Miyaki, M. edited by Paloutzian, R., Park, C. New York: Guilford Press. 2013; 2nd: 274–291
  • Dynamics of ideal affect Changing emotions Tsai, J. L. edited by Hermans, D., Rime, B. Psychology Press. 2013: 120–126
  • Value moderates age differences in personality: The example of relationship orientation Personality and Individual Differences Fung, H. H., Ho, Y. W., Tam, K., Tsai, J., Zhang, X. 2011
  • Further Evidence for the Cultural Norm Hypothesis: Positive Emotion in Depressed and Control European American and Asian American Women CULTURAL DIVERSITY & ETHNIC MINORITY PSYCHOLOGY Chentsova-Dutton, Y. E., Tsai, J. L., Gotlib, I. H. 2010; 16 (2): 284-295

    Abstract

    How does culture shape the effects of depression on emotion? A previous study showed that depression dampened negative emotional responses in European Americans, but increased these responses in Asian Americans (Chentsova-Dutton et al., 2007). These findings support the cultural norm hypothesis, which predicts that depression reduces individuals' abilities to react in culturally ideal ways (i.e., disrupting European Americans' abilities to express emotions openly and Asian Americans' abilities to moderate emotions). In the present study, we examined the generalizability of this hypothesis to positive emotion. We measured the emotional reactivity of 35 European Americans (17 depressed) and 31 Asian Americans (15 depressed) to an amusing film. Consistent with the cultural norm hypothesis, European Americans who were depressed showed dampened emotional reactivity (i.e., fewer smiles, less intense reports of positive emotion, lower cardiac activation) compared to control European Americans, whereas Asian Americans who were depressed showed similar (for smiles and reports of positive emotion), and even greater (for higher cardiac activation) emotional reactivity compared to control Asian Americans. These findings suggest that the cultural norm hypothesis generalizes to positive emotion.

    View details for DOI 10.1037/a0017562

    View details for Web of Science ID 000277174200021

    View details for PubMedID 20438167

  • Self-Focused Attention and Emotional Reactivity: The Role of Culture JOURNAL OF PERSONALITY AND SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY Chentsova-Dutton, Y. E., Tsai, J. L. 2010; 98 (3): 507-519

    Abstract

    Research conducted with European Americans suggests that attention to the individual self intensifies emotional reactivity. We propose, however, that cultural models of the self determine which aspect of the self (individual vs. relational), when attended to, intensifies emotional reactivity. In 3 studies, we predicted and observed that attention to individual aspects of the self was associated with levels of emotional reactivity that were greater in individuals from European American contexts (which promote an independent model of the self) than in individuals from Asian American contexts (which promote an interdependent model of the self). In contrast, attention to relational aspects of the self was associated with levels of emotional reactivity that were similar or greater in individuals from Asian American than in individuals from European American contexts. These findings highlight the importance of considering cultural and situational factors when examining links between the self and emotion.

    View details for DOI 10.1037/a0018534

    View details for Web of Science ID 000274588600011

    View details for PubMedID 20175627

  • Replicating the Positivity Effect in Picture Memory in Koreans: Evidence for Cross-Cultural Generalizability PSYCHOLOGY AND AGING Kwon, Y., Scheibe, S., Samanez-Larkin, G. R., Tsai, J. L., Carstensen, L. L. 2009; 24 (3): 748-754

    Abstract

    Older adults' relatively better memory for positive over negative material (positivity effect) has been widely observed in Western samples. This study examined whether a relative preference for positive over negative material is also observed in older Koreans. Younger and older Korean participants viewed images from the International Affective Picture System (IAPS), were tested for recall and recognition of the images, and rated the images for valence. Cultural differences in the valence ratings of images emerged. Once considered, the relative preference for positive over negative material in memory observed in older Koreans was indistinguishable from that observed previously in older Americans.

    View details for DOI 10.1037/a0016054

    View details for Web of Science ID 000269933600024

    View details for PubMedID 19739932

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC2775417

  • Culture and depression International Encyclopedia of Depression Chentsova-Dutton, Y. E., Tsai, J. edited by Ingram, R. E. New York: Springer Publishing. 2009
  • Understanding depression across cultures Handbook of depression Chentsova-Dutton, Y., Tsai, J. edited by Gotlib, I., Hammen, C. New York: Guilford Press. 2009; 2nd: 363–385
  • Depression and emotional reactivity: Variation among Asian Americans of east Asian descent and European Americans JOURNAL OF ABNORMAL PSYCHOLOGY Chentsova-Dutton, Y. E., Chu, J. P., Tsai, J. L., Rottenberg, J., Gross, J. J., Gotlib, I. H. 2007; 116 (4): 776-785

    Abstract

    Studies of Western samples (e.g., European Americans [EAs]) suggest that depressed individuals tend to show diminished emotional reactivity (J. G. Gehricke & A. J. Fridlund, 2002; G. E. Schwartz, P. L. Fair, P. Salt, M. R. Mandel, & G. L. Klerman, 1976a, 1976b). Do these findings generalize to individuals oriented to other cultures (e.g., East Asian cultures)? The authors compared the emotional reactions (i.e., reports of emotional experience, facial behavior, and physiological reactivity) of depressed and nondepressed EAs and Asian Americans of East Asian descent (AAs) to sad and amusing films. Their results were consistent with previous findings: Depressed EAs showed a pattern of diminished reactivity to the sad film (less crying, less intense reports of sadness) compared with nondepressed participants. In contrast, depressed AAs showed a pattern of heightened emotional reactivity (greater crying) compared with nondepressed participants. Across cultural groups, depressed and nondepressed participants did not differ in their reports of amusement or facial behavior during the amusing film. Physiological reactivity to the film clips did not differ between depressed and control participants for either cultural group. Thus, although depression may influence particular aspects of emotional reactivity across cultures (e.g., crying), the specific direction of this influence may depend on prevailing cultural norms regarding emotional expression.

    View details for DOI 10.1037/0021-843X.116.4.776

    View details for Web of Science ID 000250937700010

    View details for PubMedID 18020723

  • Ideal Affect Cultural Causes and Behavioral Consequences PERSPECTIVES ON PSYCHOLOGICAL SCIENCE Tsai, J. L. 2007; 2 (3): 242-259
  • Attachment, sense of coherence, and mental health among Chinese American college students: Variation by migration status INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF INTERCULTURAL RELATIONS Ying, Y., Lee, P. A., Tsai, J. L. 2007; 31 (5): 531-544
  • Influence and adjustment goals: Sources of cultural differences in ideal affect JOURNAL OF PERSONALITY AND SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY Tsai, J. L., Miao, F. F., Seppala, E., Fung, H. H., Yeung, D. Y. 2007; 92 (6): 1102-1117

    Abstract

    Previous studies have found that in American culture high-arousal positive states (HAP) such as excitement are valued more and low-arousal positive states (LAP) such as calm are valued less than they are in Chinese culture. What specific factors account for these differences? The authors predicted that when people and cultures aimed to influence others (i.e., assert personal needs and change others' behaviors to meet those needs), they would value HAP more and LAP less than when they aimed to adjust to others (i.e., suppress personal needs and change their own behaviors to meet others' needs). They test these predictions in 1 survey and 3 experimental studies. The findings suggest that within and across American and Chinese contexts, differences in ideal affect are due to specific interpersonal goals.

    View details for DOI 10.1037/0022-3514.92.6.1102

    View details for Web of Science ID 000246991100010

    View details for PubMedID 17547491

  • Good feelings in Christianity and Buddhism: Religious differences in ideal affect PERSONALITY AND SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY BULLETIN Tsai, J. L., Miao, F. F., Seppala, E. 2007; 33 (3): 409-421

    Abstract

    Affect valuation theory (AVT) predicts cultural variation in the affective states that people ideally want to feel (i.e., "ideal affect"). National and ethnic comparisons support this prediction: For instance, European Americans (EA) value high arousal positive (HAP) states (e.g., excitement) more and low arousal positive (LAP) states (e.g., calm) less than Hong Kong Chinese. In this article, the authors examine whether religions differ in the ideal affective states they endorse. The authors predicted that Christianity values HAP more and LAP less than Buddhism. In Study 1, they compared Christian and Buddhist practitioners' ideal affect. In Studies 2 and 3, they compared the endorsement of HAP and LAP in Christian and Buddhist classical texts (e.g., Gospels, Lotus Sutra) and contemporary self-help books (e.g., Your Best Life Now, Art of Happiness). Findings supported predictions, suggesting that AVT applies to religious and to national and ethnic cultures.

    View details for DOI 10.1177/0146167206296107

    View details for Web of Science ID 000244646000009

    View details for PubMedID 17312321

  • Learning what feelings to desire: Socialization of ideal affect through children's storybooks PERSONALITY AND SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY BULLETIN Tsai, J. L., Louie, J. Y., Chen, E. E., Uchida, Y. 2007; 33 (1): 17-30

    Abstract

    Previous findings suggest that cultural factors influence ideal affect (i.e., the affective states that people ideally want to feel). Three studies tested the hypothesis that cultural differences in ideal affect emerge early in life and are acquired through exposure to storybooks. In Study 1, the authors established that consistent with previous findings, European American preschoolers preferred excited (vs. calm) states more (indexed by activity and smile preferences) and perceived excited (vs. calm) states as happier than Taiwanese Chinese preschoolers. In Study 2, it was observed that similar differences were reflected in the pictures (activities, expressions, and smiles) of best-selling storybooks in the United States and Taiwan. Study 3 found that across cultures, exposure to exciting (vs. calm) storybooks altered children's preferences for excited (vs. calm) activities and their perceptions of happiness. These findings suggest that cultural differences in ideal affect may be due partly to differential exposure to calm and exciting storybooks.

    View details for DOI 10.1177/0146167206292749

    View details for Web of Science ID 000243347100002

    View details for PubMedID 17178927

  • Cultural models of shame and guilt Handbook of Self-Conscious Emotions Wong, Y., Tsai, J. L. edited by Tracy, J., Robin, R., Tangney, J. New York, NY: Guilford Press. 2007: 210–223
  • Cultural factors influence the expression of psychopathology The Great Ideas of Clinical Science: The 18 Concepts That Every Mental Health Practitioner and Researcher Should Understand Chentsova-Dutton, Y., Tsai, J. L. edited by O'Donohue, W., Lilienfeld, S. New York, NY: Brunner-Taylor. 2007: 375–396
  • Emotion elicitation using dyadic interaction tasks Handbook of Emotion Elicitation Roberts, N. A., Tsai, J. L., Coan, J. edited by Allen, J., Coan, J. New York, NY: Oxford University Press. 2007: 106–123
  • Gender differences in emotional response among European Americans and Hmong Americans COGNITION & EMOTION Chentsova-Dutton, Y. E., Tsai, J. L. 2007; 21 (1): 162-181
  • Cultural and temperamental variation in emotional response EMOTION Tsai, J. L., Levenson, R. W., McCoy, K. 2006; 6 (3): 484-497

    Abstract

    To examine the relative influence of cultural and temperamental factors on emotional response, we compared the emotional behavior, reports of emotional experience, and autonomic responses of 50 European American (EA) and 48 Chinese American (CA) college-age dating couples during conversations about conflicts in their relationships. EA couples showed more positive and less negative emotional behavior than did CA couples, despite similarities in reports of emotional experience and autonomic reactivity. Group differences in emotional behavior were mediated by cultural (values and practices) but not temperamental factors (neuroticism and extraversion). Collapsing across groups, cultural factors accounted for greater variance in emotional behavior but lesser variance in reports of emotional experience compared with temperamental factors. Together, these findings suggest that the relative influence of cultural and temperamental factors on emotion varies by response component.

    View details for DOI 10.1037/1528-3542.6.3.484

    View details for Web of Science ID 000240290800013

    View details for PubMedID 16938089

  • Cultural variation in affect valuation JOURNAL OF PERSONALITY AND SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY Tsai, J. L., Knutson, B., Fung, H. H. 2006; 90 (2): 288-307

    Abstract

    The authors propose that how people want to feel ("ideal affect") differs from how they actually feel ("actual affect") and that cultural factors influence ideal more than actual affect. In 2 studies, controlling for actual affect, the authors found that European American (EA) and Asian American (AA) individuals value high-arousal positive affect (e.g., excitement) more than do Hong Kong Chinese (CH). On the other hand, CH and AA individuals value low-arousal positive affect (e.g., calm) more than do EA individuals. For all groups, the discrepancy between ideal and actual affect correlates with depression. These findings illustrate the distinctiveness of ideal and actual affect, show that culture influences ideal affect more than actual affect, and indicate that both play a role in mental health.

    View details for DOI 10.1037/0022-3514.90.2.288

    View details for Web of Science ID 000236445600007

    View details for PubMedID 16536652

  • The experience of college challenges: Variation among Chinese American students Journal of Immigrant and Refugee Studies Ying, Y., Lee, P. A., Tsai, J. L. 2006; 4: 79-97
  • Ethnic identity Handbook of Asian American Psychology Cheryan, S., Tsai, J. L. edited by Leong, F., Inman, A., Ebreo, A., Yang, L., Kinoshita, L., Fu, F. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications. 2006
  • Cross-cultural applications of the MMPI-2 A practitioner’s guide Butcher, J. N., Mosch, S. C., Tsai, J. L., Nezami, E. edited by Butcher, J. Washington, DC, USA: American Psychological Association. 2006: 503–537
  • Inventory of college challenges for ethnic minority students: psychometric properties of a new instrument in Chinese Americans. Cultural diversity & ethnic minority psychology Ying, Y., Lee, P. A., Tsai, J. L. 2004; 10 (4): 351-364

    Abstract

    The Inventory of College Challenges for Ethnic Minority Students (ICCEMS) is a newly developed instrument that assesses challenges faced by ethnic minority college students across a range of cultural, academic, social, and practical domains. The present study tested the ICCEMS among Chinese American students in an attempt to identify its factor structure and assess its psychometric properties. A total of 13 factor domains emerged. The Cronbach's alpha and 1-month test-retest reliability of the subscales and the overall scale supported their reliability. Both criterion and construct validities were also demonstrated. Chinese American college students faced the greatest challenges in terms of unclear career direction and academic demands.

    View details for PubMedID 15554798

  • Somatic and social: Chinese Americans talk about emotion PERSONALITY AND SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY BULLETIN Tsai, J. L., Simeonova, D. I., Watanabe, J. T. 2004; 30 (9): 1226-1238

    Abstract

    Empirical findings suggest that Chinese and Americans differ in the ways that they describe emotional experience, with Chinese using more somatic and social words than Americans. No one, however, has investigated whether this variation is related to differences between Chinese and American conceptions of emotion or to linguistic differences between the English and Chinese languages. Therefore, in two studies, the authors compared the word use of individuals who varied in their orientation to Chinese and American cultures (European Americans [EA], more acculturated Chinese Americans [CA], and less acculturated CA) when they were speaking English during emotional events. Across both studies, less acculturated CA used more somatic (e.g., dizzy) and more social (e.g., friend) words than EA. These findings suggest that even when controlling for language spoken, cultural conceptions of emotion may shape how people talk about emotion.

    View details for DOI 10.1177/0146167204264014

    View details for Web of Science ID 000223215500011

    View details for PubMedID 15359024

  • The emotional integration of childhood experience: Physiological, facial expressive, and self-reported emotional response during the adult attachment interview 41st Annual Meeting of the Society-for-Psychophysiological-Research Roisman, G. I., Tsai, J. L., Chiang, K. H. AMER PSYCHOLOGICAL ASSOC. 2004: 776–89

    Abstract

    Attachment researchers claim that individual differences in how adults talk about their early memories reflect qualitatively distinct organizations of emotion regarding childhood experiences with caregivers. Testing this assumption, the present study examined the relationship between attachment dimensions and physiological, facial expressive, as well as self-reported emotional responses during the Adult Attachment Interview (AAI). Consistent with theoretical predictions, more prototypically secure adults behaviorally expressed and reported experiencing emotion consistent with the valence of the childhood events they described. Insecure adults also showed distinctive and theoretically anticipated forms of emotional response: Dismissing participants evidenced increased electrodermal activity during the interview, a sign of emotional suppression, whereas preoccupied adults showed reliable discrepancies between the valence of their inferred childhood experiences and their facial expressive as well as reported emotion during the AAI. Results substantiate a case that the AAI reflects individual differences in emotion regulation that conceptually parallel observations of attachment relationships in infancy.

    View details for Web of Science ID 000223483300010

    View details for PubMedID 15355165

  • Psychometric properties of the intergenerational congruence in immigrant families: Child scale in Chinese Americans JOURNAL OF COMPARATIVE FAMILY STUDIES Ying, Y. W., Lee, P. A., Tsai, J. L. 2004; 35 (1): 91-?
  • Variation among European Americans in emotional facial expression JOURNAL OF CROSS-CULTURAL PSYCHOLOGY Tsai, J. L., Chentsova-Dutton, Y. 2003; 34 (6): 650-657
  • The effects of depression on the emotional responses of Spanish-speaking Latinas. Cultural diversity & ethnic minority psychology Tsai, J. L., Pole, N., Levenson, R. W., Muñoz, R. F. 2003; 9 (1): 49-63

    Abstract

    Emotional responses (physiology, self-report, and facial expression) of 12 depressed and 10 nondepressed Spanish-speaking Latinas during sad and amusing film clips of human and animal content were compared. Depressed Latinas demonstrated less electrodermal reactivity across all the film clips and displayed fewer social smiles during the amusing-human film clip than nondepressed Latinas. No differences emerged for cardiovascular measures, reports of emotion, or facial expressions of happiness and negative emotion. Observed differences in electrodermal reactivity are similar to results from previous studies of Anglo Americans, suggesting that reduced electrodermal activity may be linked to depression across cultures. The findings also suggest that, for Latinas, depression may selectively alter expressions that serve interpersonal functions.

    View details for PubMedID 12647325

  • Emotional Expression and Physiology in European Americans and Hmong Americans EMOTION Tsai, J. L., Chentsova-Dutton, Y., Freire-Bebeau, L., Przymus, D. E. 2002; 2 (4): 380-397

    Abstract

    Ethnographic and clinical observations suggest that Asians are less expressive than European Americans. To examine whether this difference emerged in online emotional responding, 50 Hmong Americans (HAs) and 48 European Americans (EAs) were asked to relive past episodes of intense happiness, pride, love, anger, disgust, and sadness. Facial behavior and physiological reactivity were measured. For most emotions, more cultural similarities than differences were found. There were some exceptions: During happiness, fewer HAs than EAs showed non-Duchenne smiles (i.e., "social" smiles), despite similarities in reported emotional experience and physiological reactivity. Within-group differences between "less Hmong" and "more Hmong" HAs were also found. Implications of these findings for our understanding of culture-emotion relations are discussed.

    View details for DOI 10.1037//1528-3542.2.4.380

    View details for Web of Science ID 000208224800004

    View details for PubMedID 12899371

  • Psychophysiological studies of emotion and psychopathology Clinical Personality Assessment King, S. K., Tsai, J. L., Chentsova-Dutton, Y. edited by Butcher, J. N. New York, NY: Oxford University Press. 2002: 56–74
  • What does “Being American” mean?: Differences between Asian American and European American young adults Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology Tsai, J. L., Morstensen, H., Wong, Y., Hess, D. 2002; 8: 257-273
  • Why and how we should study ethnic identity, acculturation, and cultural orientation Asian American psychology: The science of lives in context Tsai, J. L., Chentsova-Dutton, Y., Wong, Y. edited by Hall, G., Okazaki, S. Washington, D.C.: American Psychological Association. 2002: 41–65
  • Different models of cultural orientation in American and overseas-born Asian Americans Asian American Mental Health: Assessment Theories and Methods Tsai, J. L., Chentsova-Dutton, Y. . edited by Kurasaki, K., Okazaki, S., Sue, S. New York, NY: Kluwer Academic/Plenum Publishers.. 2002: 95–106
  • Towards an understanding of Asian American interracial dating and marriage Inside the American Couple Tsai, J. L., Przymus, D. E., Best, J. L., Carstensen, L. edited by Yalom, M. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press. 2002: 189–210
  • Understanding depression across cultures Handbook of Depression Tsai, J. L., Chentsova-Dutton, Y. edited by Gotlib, I., Hammen, C. New York, NY: Guilford Press. 2002: 467–491
  • Cultural predictors of self-esteem: a study of Chinese American female and male young adults. Cultural diversity & ethnic minority psychology Tsai, J. L., Ying, Y. W., Lee, P. A. 2001; 7 (3): 284-297

    Abstract

    This study examined how specific domains of cultural orientation (language, social affiliation, and cultural pride) related to self-esteem for a sample of 174 Chinese American male and 179 Chinese American female college students. Participants completed measures of cultural orientation (General Ethnicity Questionnaire; J.L. Tsai, Y.W. Ying, & P.A. Lee, 2000) and self-esteem (M. Rosenberg, 1965). Cultural orientation significantly predicted self-esteem, above and beyond the contribution of age, gender, grade point average, and socioeconomic status. Specifically, proficiency in English and Chinese languages and pride in Chinese culture were positively correlated with self-esteem, whereas affiliation with Chinese people was negatively correlated with selfesteem. The cultural predictors of self-esteem differed for Chinese American men and women. Whereas self-esteem was mainly related to pride in Chinese culture for Chinese American women, self-esteem was mainly related to English and Chinese language proficiency for Chinese American men. Implications of these findings for understanding Asian Americans are discussed.

    View details for PubMedID 11506074

  • Relationship of young adult Chinese Americans with their parents: Variation by migratory status and cultural orientation AMERICAN JOURNAL OF ORTHOPSYCHIATRY Ying, Y. W., Lee, P. A., Tsai, J. L., Lee, Y. J., Tsang, M. 2001; 71 (3): 342-349

    Abstract

    To examine whether Chinese and American cultural orientations mediate the association between migratory status and parent relationship, 122 American-born, 121 early-immigrant, and 110 late-immigrant Chinese young adults were measured on cultural orientation and parent relationship. The poorest relationships were found in the early-immigrant group. Cultural orientation mediated the difference in parent relationship between early and late immigrant groups, but not between early-immigrant and American-born groups. Implications of the findings for research and practice are discussed.

    View details for Web of Science ID 000170174200009

    View details for PubMedID 11495336

  • Asian American college students as model minorities: an examination of their overall competence. Cultural diversity & ethnic minority psychology Ying, Y. W., Lee, P. A., Tsai, J. L., Hung, Y., Lin, M., Wan, C. T. 2001; 7 (1): 59-74

    Abstract

    Educational success among Asian Americans has led to their being labeled the "model minority." At the University of California, Berkeley (UCB), Asian American students have higher grade point averages (GPAs) than Hispanic and African American but not White students, supporting the notion that Asian Americans are more successful compared with other racial minorities. However, success in the classroom does not implicate effective functioning in life, and nonacademic criteria ought to be considered in assessing the validity of the model minority image. Given the increasing diversification of the United States, cross-racial engagement may be an additional contributor to overall competence. This was empirically tested in a group of 642 undergraduates at UCB, including 291 Asian, 197 White, 20 African American, 67 Hispanic, and 56 multiracial students. Overall competence was operationalized by sense of coherence, that is, the extent to which the world is experienced as comprehensible, manageable, and meaningful (A. Antonovsky, 1979, 1987). As predicted, Asian Americans had significantly fewer numbers of cross-racial groups represented in their friendship network than did students of all other races. Lower cross-racial engagement and being Asian (as compared with White) were related to a lower sense of coherence, whereas lower GPA was not. Within the Asian American subsample, cross-racial engagement was again significantly associated with greater coherence, whereas GPA again was not. Thus, extending the definition of success to overall competence, these findings raise questions about the applicability of the model minority label to Asian Americans, despite their academic achievement. Future studies need to assess the reasons for their limited cross-racial engagement and lower sense of coherence and to examine means to assist the development of these strengths.

    View details for PubMedID 11244904

  • Culture, ethnicity, and psychopathology The Comprehensive Handbook of Psychopathology Tsai, J. L., Butcher, J. N., Vitousek, K., Munoz, R. edited by Adams, H. E., Sutker, P. B. New York, NY: Plenum Press. 2001: 105–127
  • Cultural orientation of Hmong young adults Journal of Human Behavior in the Social Environment Tsai, J. L. 2001; 3-4: 99-114
  • Network composition, social integration, and sense of coherence in Chinese American young adults Journal of Human Behavior in the Social Environment Ying, Y., Lee, P. A., Tsai, J. L., Lee, Y. J., Tsang, M. 2001; 3-4: 83-98
  • Cultural orientation and racial discrimination: Predictors of coherence in Chinese American young adults JOURNAL OF COMMUNITY PSYCHOLOGY Ying, Y. W., Lee, P. A., Tsai, J. L. 2000; 28 (4): 427-441
  • The meaning of "being Chinese" and "being American" - Variation among Chinese American young adults JOURNAL OF CROSS-CULTURAL PSYCHOLOGY Tsai, J. L., Ying, Y. W., Lee, P. A. 2000; 31 (3): 302-332
  • The concept of depression in Chinese American college students Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology Ying, Y., Lee, P. A., Tsai, J. L., Yeh, Y., Huang, J. 2000; 6: 183-195
  • Autonomic, expressive, and subjective responses to emotional films in older and younger Chinese American and European American adults Psychology and Aging Tsai, J. L., Levenson, R. W., Carstensen, L. L. 2000; 15: 684-693
  • Culture Encyclopedia of Human Emotion Tsai, J. L. edited by Levison, D., Ponzetti, J., Jorgensen, P. New York, NY: Macmillan Press. 1999: 159–166
  • Emotion and aging Encyclopedia of Mental Health Pasupathi, M., Carstensen, L. L., Turk-Charles, S., Tsai, J. L. edited by Friedman, H. San Diego, CA: Academic Press. 1998: 91–101
  • Emotion and aging: Experience, expression, and control PSYCHOLOGY AND AGING Gross, J. J., Carstensen, L. L., Pasupathi, M., Tsai, J., Skorpen, C. G., Hsu, A. Y. 1997; 12 (4): 590-599

    Abstract

    Age differences in emotional experience, expression, and control were investigated in 4 studies. A community sample of 127 African Americans and European Americans (ages 19-96 years) was used in Study 1; a community sample of 82 Chinese Americans and European Americans (ages 20-85 years) was used in Study 2; a community sample of 49 Norwegians drawn from 2 age groups (ages 20-35 years and 70+ years) was used in Study 3; and a sample of 1,080 American nuns (ages 24-101 years) was used in Study 4. Across studies, a consistent pattern of age differences emerged. Compared with younger participants, older participants reported fewer negative emotional experiences and greater emotional control. Findings regarding emotional expressivity were less consistent, but when there were age differences, older participants reported lesser expressivity. Results are interpreted in terms of increasingly competent emotion regulation across the life span.

    View details for Web of Science ID A1997YK91800005

    View details for PubMedID 9416628

  • Cultural influences on emotional responding - Chinese American and European American dating couples during interpersonal conflict JOURNAL OF CROSS-CULTURAL PSYCHOLOGY Tsai, J. L., Levenson, R. W. 1997; 28 (5): 600-625
  • Clinical intervention with ethnic minority elders The Practical Handbook of Clinical Gerontology Tsai, J. L., Carstensen, L. L. edited by Carstensen, L. L., Edelstein, B. A., Dornbrand, L. Beverly Hills, CA: SAGE Publishers. 1996: 76–106
  • Ageism in interpersonal settings The Social Psychology of Interpersonal Discrimination Pasupathi, M., Carstensen, L. L., Tsai, J. L. edited by Lott, B., Maluso, D. New York, NY: Guilford Press. 1994