Power and Intra-Societal Conflict Dataset

Published: 10 July 2018| Version 1 | DOI: 10.17632/kdyc2b8h87.1
Nan Zhu,


This study employed social domain theory to examine individuals’ evaluations of intra-societal conflicts (e.g., between individuals and larger social entities and involving competing moral versus societal concerns) and the influence of power and culture on these evaluations. U.S. (N = 92) and Chinese (N = 98) university students received high or low power priming and then evaluated hypothetical scenarios about different intra-societal conflicts. They rated the acceptability of actions, agreement with various justifications for these actions, and the appropriateness of third-party involvement. Regardless of power priming and cultural background, collective-societal justifications were associated with higher approval of collective infringement on individual rights and lower support for third-party involvement, whereas individual-moral justifications were associated with lower approval of collective actions, higher approval of individual actions, and higher support for third-party involvement. However, judgments and their association with justifications were also differently affected by power priming between the two cultures, with high-power U.S. and low-power Chinese participants showing lower support for third-party involvement based on collective-societal concerns. These results show the importance of going beyond a focus on homogeneous cultural orientations when examining judgments about societal conflict, and instead considering individuals’ social status and what status and power mean in their societies.



Social Power, Social Inequality, Cross-Cultural Psychology