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10 - Development of the South African Personality Inventory: A Cross-Cultural Design in a Non-Western Society ‒ Lessons Learned and Generalizability to Other Parts of the World

from Part 2 - Individual Differences across Cultures

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  21 January 2021

Michael Bender
Affiliation:
Universiteit van Tilburg, The Netherlands
Byron G. Adams
Affiliation:
Universiteit van Tilburg, The Netherlands
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Summary

The usual operationalization of the psycholexical approach to personality becomes inefficient when dealing with languages with a limited lexicography or languages that are inaccessible to the investigator. These conditions, which probably hold for most of the world’s languages, call for different approaches to uncover the complexities of personality. This chapter describes the mixed-method approach in designing the South African Personality Inventory (SAPI). We describe (1) the dynamics and lessons learned from the extensive qualitative research conducted in 11 languages, (2) the challenges of item development and reduction with a focus on cultural comparability and validity, and (3) the complexities in extracting and validating the SAPI factor structure across language versions. We discuss how the diversification of methods can enrich the understanding of personality in understudied contexts and inform the debate between universal models (with their lure of cross-cultural comparability) and indigenous models (with their claim to ecological validity).

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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2021

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