Contributed Symposium

The relationships between separation, connectedness, and identity: A reconsideration with Japanese adolescents

[Speaker] Sugimura, Kazumi:1
[Co-author] Nakama, Reiko:2, Mizokami, Shinichi:3, Hatano, Kai:4, Tsuzuki, Manabu:5
1:Hiroshima University (Japan), 2:Hyogo University of Teacher Education (Japan), 3:Kyoto University (Japan), 4:Osaka Prefecture University (Japan), 5:Chuo University (Japan)

Identity formation is assumed to occur within the ongoing negotiation between parent-adolescent separation and connectedness in Western individualistic societies. However, there is a dearth of research on this issue in Eastern collectivistic countries where a strong emotional bond between parents and adolescents is valued rather than separation from parents. In this study, we aimed at examining the role of emotional separation and connectedness (parental trust) in identity among Japanese adolescents. Participants were 857 pre-, 518 early, and 573 late adolescents. The results of hierarchical regression analyses showed that, for all age groups, emotional separation was not linked to identity and that, surprisingly, there were no significant interactive effects of emotional separation and parental trust for identity. Thus, there was no association between emotional separation and identity even when parental trust was high. These results suggest that the separation may not play an important role to identity formation in collectivistic societies.
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