The influence of gestures of appreciation on gratitude and helping: Exploring the role of culturally variable reciprocity norms

Matthew Wice, David Howe, Namrata Goyal

Research output: Indexed journal article Articlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The current investigation explored cultural variability in perceived gratitude and the relational consequences associated with expressions of gratitude after receiving help. We examined responses to expressions of gratitude among two populations shown to rely on contrasting norms of reciprocity (Goyal & Miller, 2017; Miller et al., 2014): European Americans, who tend to rely on exchange norms; and Indians, who tend to rely on communal norms (N = 123). We found that expressive gestures given in response to a benefit increased perceptions of gratitude and likelihood of helping a second time among European Americans, but not Indians. The results highlight the importance of these expressive gestures in motivating helping behavior within exchange-based (but not communal-based) systems of reciprocity. Results also illustrate cultural variability in the meaning and function of expressive gestures of appreciation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)263-271
Number of pages9
JournalTPM - Testing, Psychometrics, Methodology in Applied Psychology
Volume25
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2018
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Culture
  • Exchange norms
  • Gratitude
  • Helping behavior
  • Reciprocity

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