Frogs' Legs Versus Roast Beef: How Culture Can Influence Mind-Wandering Episodes Across the Lifespan

Martinon, Léa, Smallwood, Jonathan, Hamilton, Colin and Riby, Leigh (2019) Frogs' Legs Versus Roast Beef: How Culture Can Influence Mind-Wandering Episodes Across the Lifespan. Europe’s Journal of Psychology, 15 (2). pp. 211-239. ISSN 1841-0413

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Numerous studies have captured the nature of mind-wandering and how it changes across the lifespan; however, the influence of culture has been neglected. This study investigated the joint effects of culture and age in a large scale online questionnaire-based survey of 308 adults over 18 years of age, both in France and the United Kingdom. To capture a profile of thinking style, self-report measures of mind-wandering frequency, mindfulness, mood, rumination, self-reflection, future thinking, depressive symptoms, and cognitive failures were gathered. Findings revealed an earlier decrease in mind-wandering frequency for French speaking participants. Cultural effects were demonstrated on rumination and reflection rates across the life span, with in general more rumination and less reflection for English speakers. Overall, negatively toned thoughts were dominant for English compared to more expressive thoughts in general for French speakers. Confirmatory factor analyses featured different theoretical models to explain mind-wandering frequency in the French and British populations. This study provides the basis for further investigations of sociocultural influences on the eclectic phenomenon of mind-wandering.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: mind-wandering, day-dreaming, cultural differences, self-generated thoughts, aging, rumination, reflection
Subjects: C800 Psychology
Department: Faculties > Health and Life Sciences > Psychology
Depositing User: Elena Carlaw
Date Deposited: 04 Jul 2019 16:35
Last Modified: 01 Aug 2021 11:18

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